We’re studying wildflowers during this term for Nature Study here at our school. And we’ve discovered what a valuable resource the JMU Arboretum is for getting to see some otherwise hard-to-find flowers.
We found a trout lily, just one, near the end of our walk. We had researched it at home first, and read that it goes by several different names: yellow adder’s tongue, dog tooth violet, and trout lily. The name trout lily comes from the spotted leaves, resembling the spots on the fish it derives its name from. We read that it is common to find a patch of trout lily leaves with very few blossoms. And sure enough, in this small patch of leaves there was only one yellow lily flower. The trout lily is a true lily, spreading both by seed, as well as by forming new corms (bulb-like roots) underground. It is really an inconspicuous flower when viewed from above, partly because it is small and partly because it’s outer sepals are rusty-colored, making it blend into the foliage around it. When you get down on ground level, however, you’ll get a better glimpse of the sunny yellow lily flower.
Logan was the one who “spotted” it for us.