snow flower, end of spring

Snow Flower (or Fringe Flower), end of Spring. . . (Chionanthus virginicus) The shiny green leaves
of the Fringe Flower appear late in Spring, just ahead of the flowers. The plant is dioecious, or 'of two
houses,' with male and female flowers on separate individuals. (A male specimen is pictured above.)
Snow Flower is the literal translation of its botanical name, and seems especially appropriate, not
just because of the wonderful floral display, but also because it signals or articulates the end of
Spring and the beginning of Summer. Other much larger North American native trees flowering
at about the same time as the Snow Flower, like the Robinias (Black Locust) and Yellow-Poplars,
seem to me to mark more the slower rhythms of the hot and dry prairie Summer yet to come.

FIRST CORN!    hobble-bush Hobble-bush,
a native Viburnum

(Photograph was made Saturday the 1st of June, 2002)

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Photograph by Cliff Crego © 2002