Thursday, March 12, 2020

Yellow Skunk Cabbage

Erika and I saw flowering Yellow Skunk Cabbage (aka Swamp Lantern) near Olympia today, 11 March 2020. This image, however, was taken almost a year ago. Yellow Slunk Cabbage grows in swampy areas of the Pacific Northwest, from Alaska to California, east to Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. This species was introduced to Great Britian in the early 1900s, where it escaped into the wild. They emit a skunky odor to attract beetle and fly pollinators. Like the Eastern Slunk Cabbage, it is one of the first plants to bloom in the late winter or early spring. In North America, Yellow Skunk Cabbage has a number of native uses, but consuming too much skunk cabbage can be fatal. The plant is also eaten as a laxative by bears coming out of hibernation (Wikipedia).

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