|Orchis spectabilis - Showy Orchis|
|Arisaema triphyllum- Jack in the Pulpit|
Small family farms filled the sandy flat valley, but the steep slopes and marshy base of Coon Rock seemed a wild land at the time. My mother and I headed for the cave one hot day and ended up wading in deep water through the marshy woods at the north side of the hill. As we got on higher ground we noticed the Jack in the Pulpits; they were everywhere and they were huge. They were so large we measured them; some were three feet tall. The flowers were big goblets, some with water in them. I wonder if any place in the midwest now can grow a Jack in the pulpit that large.
The past few years our smaller Jack in the pulpit residents have a hard time keeping their flowers. Just as the morels pop up, Jack in the pulpits start to bloom and that's when turkeys roam the woods for a spring feast. By the time we get up and get out in the woods, the turkeys have nipped every morel off at the base and also eaten all the Jack in the pulpit flowers. That must be a tasty combination for turkeys.
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