Welcome to the Kentucky Native Plant and Wildlife Blog.

Welcome to the Kentucky Native Plant and Wildlife Blog.
The purpose of this blog is to provide information on using native plants in the landscape, issues related to invasive exotic plants, urban wildlife management, and wildlife damage management. It is my intention that this information will assist you in deciphering the multitude of information circulating around the web and condense in some meaningful method as it relates to Kentucky. In addition, I hope to highlight a native plant that can be used in the landscape.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Plant of the Week: Spring beauty (Claytonia virginica)

Some folks consider these delicate spring wildflowers to be weeds because they flourish in older, established neighborhoods and carpet the ground in spring.  I love them because it looks like a spring beauty winter when the yards are all white.  I love them for their use in a woodland wildflower garden because they can act as a "filler" between some of the larger, and more showy species.  These gems, unique in the Purslane family, grow about 3" tall and have long, linear like leaves and a drooping cluster of flowers at the top that bears 1/2" wide flowers with 5 petals, tinged with varying amounts of red stripping, The 5 anthers are also quite showy and vary from light pink to hot pink.  This species reseeds very easily and can form large colonies but they stay in flower for about a month which makes them a desirable woodland garden plant. They are pollinated by bees and the roots and corms have a sweet potato taste and are quite tasty.   The plant is named for John Clayton, a famous Virginia botanist.

1 comment:

  1. This is one of my favorite and most looked for spring wildflowers. I had no idea that some people consider it a weed - what a lot of nonsense. I also didn't know that it was named for John Clayton. I didn't have nearly enough of this beautiful wildflower in my own garden, so I bought seeds from Prairie Moon Nursery some time ago and they are just beginning to germinate. I can't wait to have this "weed" all over the place.