When it’s raining or even on a cloudy day you’ll miss out seeing the sunny yellow blossoms of Coltsfoot. It blooms in Eastern North America in early Spring each April.
Coltsfoot is one of my favorite Spring Ephemeral flowers because it’s such a bright happy color when it’s in bloom and everything else is still old winter drab.
It’s also fun to show people that it’s not a dandelion! Driving past the coltsfoot that bloom next to a country road most people probably do think it to be dandelions in flower. Neither would be noticed on the cloudy days because their flowers will be closed up tight.
During the first week of April coltsfoot was blooming in all its glory along the creek near the spillway on the Mill Race Trail at Little Buffalo State Park in Newport, PA. I had never seen such a display as I was treated to that day.
Coltsfoot flowers adjacent to the creek were blooming and a mass quantity of flowers were shining bright on the east bank of the creek, right next to the trail.
Early bloomers held their heads up high, shining back at the sun. Late bloomers were just poking their tightly closed maroon heads out of the leaf litter and soil.
Few “hoof-shaped” leaves were present and they were still small in size.
Fast forward to the middle of April and the coltsfoot mass was still in bloom. The late bloomers were shining yellow in the sunlight and the early bloomers were much taller with their now brown heads bent over.
In another week the dandelion-like seedheads will appear and the leaves will get even bigger.
(Early photos from April 5; later photo from April 16, 2017. Click on any image to see a larger view.)