Friday, April 9, 2021

My Beautiful Skunk Cabbages

May I present ... the uniquely beautiful skunk cabbages, always a welcome sight in my yard in early spring. It's a very special plant - its temperature can rise up to 15–35 °C (27–63 °F) above the air temperature, which causes the snow around it to melt. Thermogenesis, ingenious!



Sadly, it gets a bad rap because brushing against its leaves releases a smell like skunk spray. No wonder it's also called polecat weed, and that its scientific name contains the word foetidus. Luckily there are some early hatching insects that are drawn to its scent. Just look at the unusual beauty of this magnificent little native:




5 comments:

Shelley Burbank said...

I always liked them when I was growing up and playing in the woods. Didn’t mind the smell. Very pretty.

Deb said...

I'm glad to hear you like them too. I think they're misunderstood since they're not conventionally beautiful

Wendy said...

Did not know that about their temperature! Thanks for sharing neat fact!

Deb said...

There are so many amazing things out there!

Shelley Burbank said...

You know, that thermogenesis is really cool because it allows the skunk cabbage to get an early start and establish itself in it's "niche."

Makes me think about people who jump on board with new things before they get popular...or buy a stock before the company gets well-known.