Friday, October 14, 2011

More Red Berries -- © Dave Spier

If you're in the woods and searching for migrating birds, scouting for hunting season, or just hiking for exercise, you're likely to notice any dense clusters of bright scarlet berries growing on stalks maybe half a foot to a foot high, assuming they haven't fallen on the ground.  We came across some next to the Moss Lake Trail near Eagle Bay.
The pair of large, three-parted leaves that provided nourishment through the summer have wilted and disappeared to better reveal the red fruits to the world.  The idea is for wild animals to eat the berries and disperse the seeds in their droppings as they travel.  This is the strategy of Jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema sp.), a well-known wildflower that prefers moist woods.

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