Sunday, May 20, 2012

TODAY'S FLOWERS


We found these pretty flowers while walking a trail in the Massanutten Mountains a couple of weekends ago.  They are called Mountain laurel.  It is an evergreen perrenial shrub which varies from four to ten feet in height, although it can reach up to 40 feet tall.  It is native in the eastern United States (from southern Maine to northern Florida, and west to Indiana and Louisiana).

The most common Mountain laurels have many fragrant small pink and white blossoms and dark green leaves that grow about one inch across and up to five inches long, although some have flowers in shades of white or purple or other colors.  It is commonly found growing on rocky hilltops and similar areas.

Mountain Laurel is also called Ivybush, Calico Bush, Sheep Laurel, Lambkill, Clamoun and Spoonwood.  Native Americans used to make spoons from the wood.  The fragrant, star-shaped and pink flowers have attracted travelers since early colonial days, and were first recorded in America in 1624.




Today's Flowers was created by our good friend Luiz Santilli.
You can find beautiful flowers from around the world if you click here.

37 comments:

cloudia charters said...

smashing!



Friendly Aloha from Waikiki
Comfort Spiral

> < } } (°>

LadyFi said...

Such a pretty flower.

grammie g said...

Hi Denise...Gorgeous ..I don't which I like better the cute buds or the flower ; }
We do have them here in Maine!!
Grace

Carole M. said...

how beautiful those flowers growing in the wild!

The Elephant's Child said...

Thank you so much. Another blogger posted photos of this spectacular plant a little while ago, but did not know what it was called. Now, if only I can remember which blog they were on I can go back and tell her...

Jidhu Jose said...

beautiful flower

SquirrelQueen said...

The flowers are beautiful. Mountain laurel is one of the plants I really miss seeing since moving to the West Coast.

Cezar and Léia said...

Nice image to start Sunday... :)
God bless you!
Cezar

Valerie said...

Pretty flowers, so much nicer than our invasive and mostly uninteresting laurels.

Arija said...

Kalmia latifolia, commonly called Mountain-laurel or Spoonwood is an absolute treasure of a plant I had it in my mountain garden. It really is the prettiest plant with buds like someone had just piped pink icing stars.
I have always envied America for claiming this as a native. In our dry climate it is hard to grow and never reached more that 5 feet.

eileeninmd said...

Denise, very pretty shots of the Mountain Laurel. I like the pink ones, I have also seen white blooms. Have a wonderful Sunday!

Luna Miranda said...

it's very pretty! it's amazing to see something like this in the wild. gorgeous!

Sunray Gardens said...

I think they're lovely. Wanted to get some as they are evergreen also but they want acid soil.

Cher Sunray Gardens

Deb from WhatsInMyAttic said...

We caught an entire mountain neighborhood TOTALLY ENGULFED in these blooms last year on our North Carolina trip. It was like a fairy land and really quite amazing. The homes were nestled at the end of long, hilly drive paths, and the "road" we were on and the laurel was all that was visible while driving through. Just lovely...and thanks for our beautiful photos to trigger the memory!

Out on the prairie said...

what a lovely bloom, I have always enjoyed them

ShySongbird said...

Such a pretty flower. I grow it in a tub near my kitchen door. It has to be in a tub as it favours acid soil and our garden soil isn't. I think it would probably be much happier growing in the mountains though and feel sad that plants are taken from their natural environment to please our whims but of course I'm as guilty as the next person for buying them! In my ignorance (and in my defence) I didn't know its natural habitat when I bought it though.

Lovely to see the Robin on the previous post and I also enjoyed the Squirrel with the amusing captions :-)

Lovely photos as always Denise!

TexWisGirl said...

very cool, denise. learned something new today. :)

Mamabug said...

Love this beautiful flower! The blooms are so unique.

Phil said...

That is a lovely flower Denise.

A Brit in Tennessee said...

How sweet !
The prettiest of blooms...
It's amazing the number of wildflowers that cover the landscape...
~Jo

Betsy from Tennessee said...

We have Mountain Laurel all over the place down here --in the Smokies and Blue Ridge Mountains. I took some pictures of it recently on some of our trips. I had one in my yard too--but it died... Sigh!!!!! They are so pretty. Didn't know they had so many names though. Interesting!

Happy Sunday.
Hugs,
Betsy

Pat's Addition said...

Loved these when we were at Penn State. The forests were full of them.

HOOTIN ANNI said...

First off....LOVE!!! Your camera critter bird. I just opened a new blog this morning...and I hope you stop by soon [there is a link to it on my sidebar "I'd Rather B Birdin" bumper sticker.

Now, these flowers...beautiful. I've heard of Mountain Laurel, but have never seen their beauty!! Wow...gorgeous.

SHADOWS AND SUMMARIES is a link to my newest post for the day! Hope you can find time to view...and, have a super glorious Sunday!!!

Randi said...

Wow...such a beautiful flower. I have never seen this one before.

ZielonaMila said...

Interesting photographs, beautiful flowers. I am greeting

Mama Zen said...

Beautiful!

Kay said...

The flowers in the first photo are beautiful. They remind me of the print on a pretty cotton sundress.

imac said...

Flowers living in the Mountains, 2 of my favs.

Self Sagacity said...

Those flowers are interesting Denise. I wonder if we can grow them in CA?

Judy said...

Never seen this one (I live too far north)! And the shape of the buds is unique!!

Kay said...

This is such a unique and very pretty flower. I love it!

Linda said...

What a stunning, gorgeous flower! Your post perked me right up...it is getting hot and humid here, and so thank you for such a refreshing and welcomed post.

Icy BC said...

What a beautiful flower, and I love those streaks inside the flower!

lina@women said...

Lovely and unique flowers :)

i beati said...

so beautiful and gratifying to my soul

Rose from Oz is Back! said...

Always enjoy the visual feast of your flora pics Denise. Just lovely.

Marie said...

Love mountain laurel! How lovely!