Friday, May 7, 2010

Lizard’s Tail


The new boardwalk allows visitors a closer look at more of the unique plants found in the wetland. Over the past couple of weeks the lizard’s tail (Saururus cernuus) has been working up to a dazzling show. Spreading by underground runners (rhizomes), nice sweeps of two feet deep glossy green foliage have developed and filled much of the wetland. The foliage is topped everywhere with drooping white spikes of flowers. Once the flowers are pollinated, the spike transforms to string of brown capsules that resembles a lizard’s tail. Even when not in bloom lizard’s tail is recognizable by its stalked heart or arrow shaped leaves with rounded lobes at the base.

Nifty etymology note: from the Greek sauros for lizard and from the Latin cernuus for falling down or nodding

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