Category Archives: Plant Profile

Juncus brachycarpus –
Whiteroot Rush
18 June 2019

This is a rarely reported species. I found it in a wet meadow on the North Tract of the Refuge When I first tried to determine the plant’s name, I thought it was Rhynchospora capitellata, a fairly common beaksedge. I … Continue reading

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Ophioglossum pycnostichum –
13 June 2019

Ophioglossum pycnostichum (Southern Adders Tongue) is native to Southeastern North America. Some authors subsume this species under Ophioglossum vulgatum s.l. which is found in Europe and Asia. Even though it does not look like it, it is a type of … Continue reading

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Viola primulifolia –
Primrose-leaved Violet

  Viola primulifolia or Primrose-leaved Violet is an acaulescent viola meaning that the flowering stem grows from the crown of the plant along with the leaves. Its natural range is Eastern USA from Maine in the north, Iowa and Texas … Continue reading

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Liparis liliifolia –
Purple Twayblade – Part 2
31 May 2019

Today, we visited a second site where Liparis liliifolia (Purple Twayblade) was growing on the Refuge. We looked around and found several patches of these lovely orchids thriving. In all, it is possible we spotted over 100 individual plants. I … Continue reading

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Botrychium matricariifolium

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4 April 2017 – Yellow Fumewort

Yellow Fumewort – Corydalis flavula (Raf.) DC. – is another spring bloomer that is a denizen of bottomland woods and adjacent areas and is commonly found in parts of Eastern North America. As typical of a member of the Papaveraceae … Continue reading

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Bald Cypress – Taxodium distichum – 24 June 2016

Today, I forayed on the South Tract and spotted a bunch of Bald Cypress trees thriving in a swampy area next to Reddington Lake.  Bald Cypress is not native this far north, but can do all right when planted in … Continue reading

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Wild Yam – Dioscorea villosa – 18 June 2016

Several vines of wild yam (Discorea villosa) L. were spotted in full bloom along the Knowles 1 Pond on the Central Tract. Wild Yam is common in North America ranging from Ontario on the North, along the Eastern Seaboard to … Continue reading

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Bottlebrush Buckeye – Aesculus parviflora – 24 May 2016

On the way home from work today, I took a bunch of pictures of two established colonies of Aesculus parviflora (Bottlebrush Buckeye) near our home. One of them was in the middle of someone’s lawn and the other one was in … Continue reading

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21 May 2016 – Temple Grass – Zoysia matrella

Today, I found an interesting exotic on the Central Tract. It is called Temple Grass and the scientific name is Zoysia matrella. This native to East Asia and northern Australia is sometimes planted in North America as a lawn grass. … Continue reading

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8 October 2015 – Rare plant – Pluchea camphorata (camphor pluchea or marsh fleabane)

It’s been a while since I blogged here. This time we will look at an obscure plant called Camphor Pluchea or Marsh Fleabane. Its scientific name is Pluchea camphorata. This member of Asteraceae is listed by the Maryland State Department … Continue reading

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27 July 2015 – Milkweeds of Patuxent – Part 1 – Common Milkweed

Milkweeds (Asclepias spp.) are important to the Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus) because its larva feeds exclusively on it. The recent decline of the Monarch butterfly population has sparked an interest saving it by planting milkweed. The Friends of Patuxent is … Continue reading

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25 July 2015 – Japanese Stilt Grass

Photo above: Close-up of inflorescence – 18 September 2010. Japanese stilt grass (Microstegium vimineum (Trin.) A. Camus) is a common invasive plant from Asia that has spread to 26 states. Infestations of it can alter native plant communities, change and … Continue reading

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2 July 2015 – Mushroom Cornucopia!!!

(Photo above – the twelve different types of mushrooms collected today) Click on the thumbnails below for full views.) After all the rain we have received this past several days, the mushrooms on the Refuge were popping up all over, … Continue reading

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26 June 2015 – Indian Cucumber – Medeola virginiana

Today, I spotted some Indian cucumber (Medeola virginiana L.) at Chestnut Oak Bog growing on a sphagnum moss hummock. One of the plants (pictured here) was blooming and was setting seed. This interesting looking member of the family Liliaceae is … Continue reading

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20 June 2015 – Milkweed Meadow

  This meadow on the Central Tract is located along Beech Forest Drive near where the powerlines cross MD 197 and as far as I can determine is the largest field of Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca L.) on the refuge. … Continue reading

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20 June 2015 – Gerronema strombodes

Spotted this interesting mushroom along Mill Race Road just past the swamp. They were growing all over the woods from the humus soil. I can’t seem to find a common name for it, but its scientific name is Gerronema strombodes. … Continue reading

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18 June 2015 – Spotted Wintergreen – Chimaphila maculata

Spent 1.5 hours on the refuge today. Drove out to Lake Allen and spotted some white-colored flowers off in the pine woods on the east side of the lake. I got out of the Jeep to investigate and discovered it … Continue reading

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13 June 2015 – Memorial Rose – Rosa wichuraiana

About 15 years ago, I spotted two colonies of white roses across the street from our house. They were not the Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora) which had already mostly finished because blooming, and this rose was in its prime.   … Continue reading

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13 June 2015 – Common Winterberry – Ilex verticillata

(Photo above: flower cluster) I found some Common Winterberry that was in full bloom today along the Little Patuxent Trail. The scientific name for this member of the holly family (Aquifoliaceae) is Ilex verticillata (L.) A. Gray. Its native range … Continue reading

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