Saturday, April 12, 2014

Tiptoe Through the Tulips...

 ...and you might find Grape Hyacinth.  Genus Muscari.  This is a fascinating plant that has become naturalized.  It has a fascinating taxonomic history, long a member of the Liliaceae but now placed in the Asparagaceae.  What fascinates me is finding it in what appear to be wild areas of a forest, but usually always a symptom of an earlier human habitation.  When I find Grape Hyacinth in the forest, I usually always find old bottles and rusty tool nearby.  The ones pictured here are blooming in the tulip bed in our yard.  I'd guess they were purchased at a nursery and planted here by a previous owner.  I've found them along the Keddie Cascades Trail.  Start with the Wikipedia article on Muscari if you want to dig into their fascinating history - going back to Linnaeus.

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