Here is another example of one of the many beautiful wildflowers I was able to photograph in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park earlier this spring. This is another Trillium that blooms so prolifically in the Park, Catesby’s Trillium to be exact, according to The US Forest Service…
Catesby’s Trillium (Trillium catesbaei)
By Mark Pistrang
Based upon recent genetic research trillium species now belong to the family Trilliaceae. Historically trilliums have been placed in the lily family, Liliaceae. Trilliums are rhizomatous herbs with unbranched stems. Trillium plants produce no true leaves or stems above ground. The “stem” is actually just an extension of the horizontal rhizome and produces small, scale-like leaves called cataphylls. These highly modified leaves surround the flowering scape (the above ground plant) as it pushes up through soil in early spring. The leaf-like structures are technically bracts subtending the flower. Despite their morphological origins, the bracts have external and internal structure similar to that of a leaf, function in photosynthesis, and most authors refer to them as leaves.
Trilliums are divided into two major groups: The pedicellate and sessile trilliums. In the pedicellate trilliums, the flower sits upon a pedicel (stalk) that extends from the whorl of bracts. These trillium flowers are either “erect,” above the bracts, or “nodding,” recurved under the bracts. In the sessile trilliums, there is no pedicel and the flower appears to arise directly from the bracts.
Catesby’s trillium falls within the pedicellate group. This beautiful spring wildflower’s flower is on a recurved pedicel that curls back under the leaves often obscuring it from view. Flowers are typically seen from late March through June. It is distinguished by its nodding white, pink, or rose colored flowers with egg-yolk yellow anthers and its widely spaced leaves that are rolled inwardly along the length of the leaf. This unusual leaf morphology allows the flower to be more readily observed. Catesby’s trillium tends to occur in drier habitats and is typically found on acid soils, in open dry or rich mesic woods, within laurel and rhododendron thickets. Catesby’s trillium is found in Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
And here is the photo…I am just too lazy tonight to try and explain all the scientific stuff lol.
I got an evening off so I thought I might share a photo or two from a recent trip to The Great Smoky Mountain National Park where I was able to capture a quite a few very nice images from the Tennessee Mountains.
It was one of the best wildflower seasons I ever have been part of here in Madison Indiana and it was no different in the Southern Mountains. Just about every species was in full bloom when I got there and I was able to add some great shots to my portfolio.
Here are a couple shots of Trillium that I was able to capture while I was there..identifying these sometime gets a little tricky so excuse me if I mistake them.
The first one is a Sweet White Trillium followed by a Large Flowering Trillium…hopefully lol !!
So there you go if you got a positive id on these don’t be bashful, let me know so I won’t make that mistake again !!
Thanks for stopping by and taking a look, and don’t forget to click on the image for best viewing.
Sweet White Trillium
Large Flowering Trillium