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Wildflower Bloom Report

Spring Wildflower Season Will Soon End

Posted on 5/5/2017 by State Nature Preserves
While April was warm and sunny, wasn’t the beginning of May decidedly cold and gray? The chilly weather helps extend the wildflower season just a little bit longer, but this will likely be our next to last report for the season, as the tree canopy has completely closed in the southern part of the state and is at 50% in the northeast. When the trees are green, the close of the spring wildflower season is near. Here’s what’s blooming around the state this week.


At Miller Nature Sanctuary, many of the early bloomers are done, but these have been replaced by beautiful displays of the purple blooms of appendaged waterleaf, many of which grow right out of the moss covered bedrock of the Rocky Fork Gorge. False Solomon’s-seal, jack-in-the-pulpit, stonecrop and a variety of ferns add interest to the preserve. At Hall’s Creek, Virginia spiderwort and wild geranium are at peak condition, with false Solomon’s seal and appendaged waterleaf nearing peak. Many species of orchids are blooming across the southern third of the state, including pink and yellow lady’s-slippers, showy orchis, and whorled pogonia. Shawnee State Forest is a wonderful place to seek out these beautiful gems. Other places to visit to see wildflowers in southern Ohio include Davis Memorial, Lake Katharine, and Whipple State Nature Preserves.


At Clifton Gorge, the waterleafs are putting on a beautiful show, with broad-leaved, appendaged, and Virginia still at peak bloom. Wild geranium, Robin’s plantain, stonecrop, and jack-in-the-pulpit are also at peak bloom. The trilliums have faded, as have wild blue phlox, miterwort, and golden ragwort. At Christmas Rocks in the Hocking Hills, the orchids are spectacular, with showy orchis, pink lady’s-slipper, and whorled pogonia in bloom. Large flowered trillium has mostly faded however, as has rue anemone, but mayflower and wild geranium are still going strong. Violet wood sorrel is another interesting shamrock-leaved plant to seek out there; its pinkish purple blooms are open now. At Boch Hollow, wood betony, fire pink, anise root, sweet cicely, showy orchis and pink lady’s-slippers are up and blooming.


If you’re looking for trilliums, head to northern Ohio as soon as you can, as the display will be fading quickly. At Goll Woods, the wildflower display is still at peak, with at least six violet species up and blooming. Also stunning are sessile, large white, and drooping trillium, starry false Solomon’s-seal, dwarf ginseng, wood anemone and wild geranium. Blooming shrubs add color above the forest floor at Goll Woods, with blackhaw, redbud, Ohio buckeye, American gooseberry, bladdernut, and flowering dogwood open. At Kendrick Woods, wild blue phlox, rue anemone, goldenseal, wild geranium, large white trillium and sessile trillium are all still in bloom.

In northeast Ohio at Eagle Creek, the display is just past peak, but there are still many spring bloomers to see and photograph. Foam flower, dwarf ginseng, golden ragwort, Canada mayflower, several violets, wild blue phlox, and wild geranium are still blooming. The trilliums, Virginia bluebells, and squirrel corn are beginning to fade. Join us for a wildflower hike at Eagle Creek this Saturday, May 6 at 10 a.m. For a look at spring blooming wildflowers at Sheepskin Hollow this week , access the railroad bed trail. Park at the Pancake-Clarkson Road pull-off at the abandoned railroad overpass and walk south along the corridor to see wild blue phlox, bluets, and wild geranium.  Dogwood trees are also at peak bloom, but the trilliums are past peak.

In the Oak Openings region west of Toledo, the first wild lupines have begun to bloom. Campbell State Nature Preserve is an excellent place to view this species which peaks in mid-May. Finally, Lakeside Daisy remains in bloom on the Marblehead peninsula and at Kelleys Island State Park, and should last a bit longer with the cool weather we’ve been experiencing in early May.

Our spring wildflowers are almost done blooming. Be sure to make it to the woods one last time before it’s too late!

The Ohio wildflower bloom report is updated weekly with the best places to see spring wildflowers in Ohio as well as specific information on native wildflowers in the state. We encourage you to take spring wildflower photos and upload them to social media using the hashtag, #ohiowildflowers. Follow @ohiodnr and @OhioFindItHere on Twitter and Division of Natural Areas and Preserves on Facebook to see more spring wildflower photos.