5/6/11 – Featured in THE BEGINNER’S CORNER Group.
I found these wild buttercups (Prairie Buttercup – Ranunculaceae Ranunculus rhomboideus)
growing by the side of the road on my May Day walk yesterday. We finally have some signs that Spring has come to Montana! I hope these brighten up your day as much as they did mine.
Photo taken May 1, 2011, in Columbia Falls, Montana (USA) with a Kodak EasyShare Z712 IS camera set on. Contrast adjustment and Lens Blur were added in Photoshop CS. These were the actual colors, but adjusting levels brought them out more.
Shutter Speed: 1/406
Focal Length: 5.85 mm
Total range: The distribution of prairie buttercup is centered in the northern Great Plains, occurring from British Columbia to Quebec in the north and ranging at its southern limit from Washington to Idaho, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, New York, and Massachusetts. This species is considered rare in British Columbia, Illinois, Nebraska, and Ontario, and is known only from historical records in Quebec (NatureServe 2003).
Biology: The prairie buttercup is a perennial that usually blooms in very late April and early May. Seeds mature in July and may germinate the same season. The young plants bloom the following spring, thus the classification of this species as what is known as a “winter annual”. Williams (1984) suggests that in Ontario, this species often survives as a winter annual, with plants often dying during summer droughts, and seeds germinating during autumn rains to overwinter and flower/fruit the following spring. Fall germination and the development of persistent juvenile rosettes enable this species to mature quickly in spring, likely conveying an advantage in the competition for pollinators and other resources. [from the Michigan State University website—]