Montana Falls Park Wildflowers
Significant Others...

The plant at right is a peppergrass (Lepidium species). The genus is named from a form of the Greek word lepis, and means "little scale". This is a reference to the rounded, flat siliques, perched on short stalks or pedicels, that follow the flowers. Remember what Thoreau said about Blue Verbena? The same could be said about peppergrass. The stalk tells a story. Each flat, scaled silique was once a flower (see the white petals at the top of the stalk?) After the flowers bloom, wither and fall away, the flat siliques begin to form in their place. This plant is called "peppergrass" because it has a sharp, mustard-like flavor. It has been used as a condiment, a salad herb, and a cooked green. When added to another vegetable and boiled for a few minutes it imparts its flavor throughout.

More to come... 

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If, when you look at the flowers on the left, you think you see roses, you are right. This is actually a dewberry (Rubus trivialis), which is a member of the Rose Family (Rosaceae). It produces a large, black, large-seeded, sweet, juicy fruit that has been a favorite ingredient in pies for centuries. The flowers produced by R. trivialis are usually no more than 1/2 or 3/5ths inch across, but sometimes are more than twice that size. These are over an 1ΒΌ inches in diameter. Besides being good for pie making, the fruit provided by this low-growing trailer serves as food for numerous wild animals and birds, and the prickly brambles of the stems and leaf stalks provide a safe haven for little critters trying to escape the claws of larger critters. The leaves of this specimen are tri-foliate (three leaflets to a leaf), but this same species often is found with 5-foliate leaves.