Perennial. Margins of woods and thickets, in the sun and yet somewhat shaded. Nova Scotia to Ontario and Minnesota, west to the Rocky Mountains, south to Georgia. Abundant in northern Ohio. April, May.
Five to twelve inches high, bearing a whorl of three involucral leaves.
Stem-leaves three-parted, the wedge-shaped divisions lobed and toothed, or the lateral ones deeply two-parted; basal leaves long-petioled, appearing later than the flowering stem, five-parted, the divisions oblong, wedge-shaped, toothed.
White or slightly tinted at the edges, an inch across, solitary at the summit of the flowering stem.
Five to nine petal-like sepals.
Many; anthers cream color.
Fifteen to twenty carpels in a bunch, each oblong with a hooked beak.
Pollinated by bees and flies. Capable of self-fertilization.
"Within the woods Whose young and half-transparent leaves scarce cast a shade, Gay circles of Anemones dance on their stalks."
These Anemones are commonly found in colonies along the margins of open woods where the soil is light and partly shaded. They are often clustered about old stumps. The beautiful, delicate blossoms on slender, wiry stems bend and sway and yield and come to the passing breeze, so that they are not inappropriately named. The flowers have no true petals. The flower-bud nods and its outer surface is flushed with pink, but when fully open a white star faces the sun. Many stamens with cream-colored anthers are clustered about the central group of small green pistils in the centre of the flower-cup. The effect of the plant as a whole is enchanting, and is only surpassed in delicacy and beauty by its blood-brother, the Rue-Anemone.
The blossoms stand up well in the sunshine but droop in more or less discouraged fashion at night or during cloudy weather. For some reason not clear to us the Anemone appealed greatly to the ancients; it was sacred to Anemos, the wind-god of the Greeks, and they believed that without his especial favor it could not open. The Greek poets also tell us that Anemone originated from the tears dropped by Venus as she grieved in the forest over the death of Adonis. We are also told that the Romans believed that Anemone possessed a mystic charm to ward off fever, and in this faith they sought the flower and wore it much in the same spirit that we seek and wear the four-leaf clover. The Latin name is Anemone, but the English form is Anemone.
Anemone. Anemone memorosa, var. quinquefolia
Potentilia. Potentilla Canadensis