Tom's Blog

Monday, June 9, 2008

White baneberry in bloom

White baneberry (Actaea alba), often called "doll's eyes", is now in bloom. This is not as common as red baneberry (Actaea rubra), which has been blooming for some time now. We have white baneberry scattered along the edges of our north woods, but we have a fairly large patch near the top of Unit 18, a white/bur oak savanna that we have been restoring for some years now and have high hopes will eventually be in good shape.

We did not plant the white baneberry, and it was probably there before restoration. When we started restoration on this unit it was choked with black walnuts as well as honeysuckles and was very shady. Clearing was done in the winter of 2000-2001 and we have been working on this unit ever since. I assume that the white baneberry was released once we removed the deep shade. We have seen it here for at least four years but this year it seems especially lush.

We'll try to keep an eye on this species and collect the seeds when they are ready, sometime around the end of August. There are quite a few other locations at Pleasant Valley Conservancy where this species would grow well!


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