Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum)Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) Also known as Dogtooth Violet, Fawn Lily, or Trout Lily
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Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) Also known as Dogtooth Violet, Fawn Lily, or Trout Lily
Table of Contents

Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 01
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 01) The most distinguishing characteristic of non-blooming adderstongues is their mottled leaves (note the leaf to the right of the adderstongue flower).  The adderstongue blooms in early spring and can have a yellow (as left), violet or white flower with three petals and three sepals, which are supported on a short stem rising up between the plant's two leaves.  The literature says that adderstongues can grow as tall as 10 inches, but the ones we have seen are generally only a few inches high.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 02
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 02) The size of the adderstongue flower is only about 1-1/2 inches across, so it is quite easy to miss if we're in a hurry.  We spotted several patches of adderstongues from our canoe as we slowly paddled along near the wooded shoreline.  By taking the time to enjoy the many wonders of God's creation, we can learn to observe more and more of the truly spectacular and behold this marvelous beauty.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 03
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 03) The late afternoon shadows add a special beauty to this adderstongue flower.  In our hectic world, most people also seem to be hectic in their times of leisure.  They run here and there, they play rough, and they race up and down the lake in their motor boats.  In our frantic behavior we often destroy this type of beauty, never recognizing its presence.   Our hope and prayer in presenting this series is that people will take the time to truly appreciate and protect the wonders of God's creation.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 04
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 04)  This is a top view of an adder's tongue that is growing up through wood chip mulch in the park.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 05
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 05)  This wildflower was commonly called: adder's tongue because of the appearance of the leaves as they emerge from the ground in the spring, trout lily because the mottled leaves resemble the markings on a brook trout, fawn lily because of the way the two leaves stand up as the ears of an alert fawn, and dog's tooth or dogtooth violet because the bulb looks like a dog's canine tooth.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 06
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 06)  Since the petals and sepals of the adder's tongue are similar in appearance, at first glance it is sometimes difficult to tell one from the other.  In the top of this photo, we can see two of the sepals unwrapping on the outside of the flower, and the three petals emerging from within.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 07
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 07)  To continue with our discussion about the previous adder's tongue photo, the three sepals are on the outside (under) the petals in this photo.  We can also clearly see the six stamens and one pistil.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 08
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 08)  This is another look at an adder's tongue that has not fully opened.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 09
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 09)  It should be noted that this photo of the adder's tongue is taken up-side-down, as the flower usually hangs downward from its hooked stem.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 10
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 10)  This is a patch of adder's tongue that we spotted growing in the woods.  The flowers had not yet appeared.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 10a
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 10a)  In this photo, we have a closer look at the adder's tongue leaves.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 11
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 11)  As the adder's tongue flower fully opens, it usually stands more upright.  The sepals also curl to the rear, making them easier to distinguish from the petals.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 12
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 12)  In this bee's eye view of an adder's tongue, we have a partial side view of the stamens and pistil, and the spots on the sepals and petals.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 13
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 13)  There is so much beauty in God's creation that we can never see it all; but we can all learn to appreciate it and protect it.  The adder's tongue is just one of God's beautiful creations.  This series shows many of the ways we can appreciate it.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 14
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 14)  A stately adder's tongue stands on the forest floor displaying her beauty.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 15
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 15)  This is another adder's tongue that was growing in the woods.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 15a
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 15a)  This is a closer look at the adder's tongue and the visitor who is walking on the "back porch."
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 16
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 16)  This is a rear view of an adder's tongue.  From this view, the sepals are darker in color than the petals.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 17
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 17)  This is a patch of adder's tongue we spotted growing in a wooded clearing.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 17a
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 17a)  This is a closer look at one of the adder's tongue plants.  We find it interesting that the leaf pattern seems to be different on each leaf, yet at the same time, their spotted design makes this wildflower easy to spot.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 18
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 18)  This is another look at the patch of adder's tongue wildflowers.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 18a
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 18a)  This is a closer look at some of the adder's tongue growing in the patch.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 19
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 19)  This is a rear view of an adder's tongue wildflower.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 19a
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 19a)  From the rear view it is easy to distinguish the adder's tongue's 3 sepals (darker color) from the 3 petals.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 20
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 20)  This is an upward looking view of one of the adder's tongue wildflowers.
Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 20a
(Adder's Tongue (Erythronium americanum) - 20a)  This is a bee's eye view of the adder's tongue, which gives us good look at the stamens and pistil.

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lamb-right lamb-left Presented here are just a few of the countless components of God's creation.  Just as we cannot have human and animal life without water and plants, neither can we have lasting peace without love and compassion.  It is our hope and prayer that this series will motivate people to live and act in a cruelty-free manner; that we would no longer hurt or destroy each other, the animals or our environment.