Spring Ephemerals Bloom in Mass Quantities

The middle of May brings the end of Spring ephemerals in central Pennsylvania. These early spring flowers are done with blooming by the time the tree canopy fills in with leaves. Once the trees leaf-in the small woodland plants can’t get enough energy from the sun to continue growth. Their greenery dies back and the plant goes into a dormant period until the following year when late Winter warmings stir them back to life.

A neat thing about early woodland flowering plants is that they often bloom en masse. Hundreds of flowering plants in a small area is a sight to behold, especially when the rest of the landscape is still brown and grey. Photographs cannot do these beautiful scenes justice. One has to be there in person to experience the thrill that can only be suggested via photography.

Mass of Virginia Bluebells along the Swatara Creek, Dauphin County, PA.
Mass of Virginia Bluebells along the Swatara Creek, Dauphin County, PA. Photo taken 5 April 2006.
Mass of Marsh Marigolds in Gifford Pinchot State Park, York County, PA.
Mass of Marsh Marigolds in Gifford Pinchot State Park, York County, PA.
Mass of Dutchman's Breeches in Perry County, PA.
Mass of Dutchman's Breeches in Perry County, PA. Photo taken 21 April 2010.
Mass of Bluets in Perry County, PA. Photo taken 7 April 2010.
Mass of Bluets in Perry County, PA. Photo taken 7 April 2010.

Places north of Route 80 in Pennsylvania, or at higher elevation, still have a little time to see the Spring ephemeral flowers.

It can be a very uplifting experience to see the natural beauty of the country. When you go, don’t forget to take the camera!

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