March of the snow drops... and skunk cabbage

It's that time of year when we're all eagerly anticipating warmth and lush greenery. To mark the official start of spring two very different plants are on the scene to cheer us on: Snowdrops and Skunk cabbage.

  Galanthus nivalis -  Snowdrops

Galanthus nivalis - Snowdrops

Both plants are ephemeral and disappear by summer but that's where the similarities end. One is a bulb from Europe most commonly found in cultivated gardens while the other is native to North America in wet and mucky woodlands.

  Symplocarpus foetidus  - Eastern Skunk Cabbage

Symplocarpus foetidus - Eastern Skunk Cabbage

Skunk cabbage is wondrous in that it generates its own heat, literally melting through frozen ground! When in bloom it attracts the earliest of pollinators by releasing a carrion-like odor.

 Skunk Cabbage found in its preferred habitat: wet woods

Skunk Cabbage found in its preferred habitat: wet woods