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Trailing Arbutus in Bloom

5-1-14 trailing arbutus 109Trailing Arbutus (Epigaea repens) is said to have heralded spring to the winter-weary Pilgrims in 1621 and thus is known as “Mayflower” by many. (It is also the Massachusetts state flower.) Creeping along the ground where the soil is typically quite acidic are Trailing Arbutus’s hairy, woody stems bearing evergreen, aromatic leaves that are present year round. Only in the early spring are we treated to its fragrant pink flowers, often nestled under these leathery leaves. Abundant nectar is found by overwintering bumblebee queens that are attracted to Trailing Arbutus’s indescribably delicate and sweet-smelling scent.

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2 responses

  1. viola

    Beautiful picture of it. I have tried so hard over many years but have never quite got it. Great for you!

    May 1, 2014 at 4:24 pm

  2. Too bad the state flower is so hard to find in the state of MA! Too much looting over the years I guess. Terrific photo!

    May 2, 2014 at 2:16 am

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