Are these bluebells?
May 3, 2005 10:58 AM   Subscribe

MeFi botanists: These are buebells, right, blooming now until June? (Yes, that IS my cat Widget on the scanner trying to eat them.) But what are these, fallen from a tree or plant on the NE Ohio shore of Lake Erie? (Pic is aprox 200% actual size.) Does anyone else have any plants you need to identify? Are there any good books or online flora resources you recommend that allow a person to maybe search by, say, "flowers-blue" and then narrow the search, perusing images? Thanks.
posted by Shane to Science & Nature (9 answers total)
The Connecticut Botanical Society's page lets you browse wildflowers by color and has good pictures. I've used it to ID wildflowers in Western PA, so you might have luck with it.
posted by driveler at 11:21 AM on May 3, 2005

You might also want to try enature.
posted by driveler at 11:23 AM on May 3, 2005

I use the Audubon Field Guide to North American Wildflowers book if local resources don't turn up anything good. You can search by flower color which is then sub-divided by petal configuration which usually allows me to narrow down pretty much anything. However, this is for flowers, not trees that flower or anything else that might have flowers on it. You can also try this page which is more useful the more info you have about the plant and has a color-based part. You still need to click through Google Images to get flower pix, but it's a pretty robust database.
posted by jessamyn at 11:58 AM on May 3, 2005

I'm a fan of this series of little books. On another note, the cat image is very wonderful.
posted by Morrigan at 12:22 PM on May 3, 2005

Looks like bluebells to me. The second photograph looks like it comes from a tree, I'm guessing but looks like the cones an Alder would produce. If you have more of the plant (a leaf would help) you could try this tree identifier.
posted by squeak at 2:39 PM on May 3, 2005

There are a few online references mentioned at the Wildflowers, North America group on Flickr, though none appear to be specific to your location, Shane.
posted by DakotaPaul at 2:52 PM on May 3, 2005

Sorry can't help you there, but I've got some things appearing in the back yard that I'm curious about, so I'm glad you asked the question. I'll be checking out the suggested links.

The picture/scan is great! Made me smile.
posted by Savannah at 7:23 PM on May 3, 2005

Thanks for all the links and such, everyone.

squeak, they do look very cone-like, but maybe not full-grown. Guess I'd better find some that are still on the tree.
posted by Shane at 9:46 PM on May 3, 2005

News from a botanist friend who really knows his stuff:
"Yes, whoever Squeak is, he/she was right that the second things are Alder cones. And yep, the first thing is Mertensia, which is bluebells in some languages."
Sorry it's so late!
posted by nprigoda at 10:32 AM on May 5, 2005

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