Certain flowers are found together. Almost invariably if one finds a particular species in a particular place, he finds others which belong in that same association of plants. Thus, when it happens that spring has come back and the oak woods are in bloom, yellow violets blossom in company with red trilliums, Dutchman's breeches, mayapples, and wild blue phlox. Find one, find them all- almost always.
Viola eriocarpa Schw.
April-May Oak woods.
The smooth yellow violet is one of the branched species of that extensive clan. The stems are smooth and yellow-green and are much branched. The leaves are heart-shaped, the shape of those found on the common blue violet. The flowers are borne on long, thin stems and are a bright butter yellow with delicate brown hair-lines along which insects are guided to the nectar.
The yellow violet comes at a time when life is really awakening in earnesl in the oak woods. The snails are ou1 in the good moisture of an April morning. There is a shining black salamander under a log, a salamander which in the soft April night went to the pond to lay its eggs. Last night, too, the toads were trilling softly in the woods. The whip-poor-wills came back and added their own urgent voices to the night chorus. Now in the spring sunshine there is a mourning cloak butterfly flitting about in search of a willow on which to lay eggs. Beneath a spice bush a towhee has made its nest and scratches energetically among the leaves. Spring. Oak woods. Yellow violets.