Vermont is famous for its beautiful fall foliage, but to those in the know, spring in Vermont is just as beautiful. The spring wildflowers of Vermont make the state a joy to walk and explore – that is, if you know where to find them. Fortunately there are lots of places to see Vermont wildflowers and spring plants in southern Vermont, so read on to see what you can find.
Vermont Flowers to Look For
Here are a few of our favorite native Vermont wildflower species that bloom in the spring:
· Trillium – Several varieties of wild trillium grow in Vermont, including Great White Trillium and Western Wake Robin. These fragile flowers grow in forests and stony areas, and during their short bloom times they are always a sight to behold. However, Vermont wildflower lovers should be careful to never pick trillium flowers, since doing so can damage the plant and prevent it from growing new blossoms next season.
· Jack-In-The-Pulpit – These striking green and brown striped flowers are also known as Brown Dragons or, less flatteringly, Bog Onions. They’re often found in moist and shady areas such as forest floors and thickets. This is another flower that you should take a look-but-don’t-touch approach with. Parts of it are toxic to humans and animals if ingested.
· Coltsfoot – These small yellow flowers resemble dandelions at first glance, but they are actually members of the sunflower family. Coltsfoot flowers are easy to spot since they grow in clusters and have no apparent leaves. Keep an eye out for them along roadsides and beside trails.
· Trout-Lilies – This family of flowers includes a variety of different-colored lilies, ranging from white to pink and purple to striking yellow. Most trout-lily plants grow around 6 inches tall and can be found in partial sun or shady areas, and they usually grow in large groups rather than alone.
· Fiddleheads – Though they aren’t a flower, fiddleheads are perhaps Vermont’s most famous spring plant. These coiled baby ferns are prized for their culinary uses, but they’re also plenty nice to admire as they grow. Look for them in moist, shady areas or places with lots of other fern growth.
These are only a few of the species of wildflower you’ll find in Vermont. For a more extensive list that can help you identify all the flowers you’ll find, take a look at Wildflowerinformation.org. You can search by the flower’s characteristics to find exactly what you’re looking for, or search by zone (Vermont is Zone 5) to see all the flowers you might encounter.
Where to Find Vermont Wildflowers
There’s no one place to search for wildflowers in Vermont – they grow almost everywhere in one form or another. However, that doesn’t mean some places aren’t better than others when it comes to finding flowers. Here are a few good places to start:
Molly Stark State Park – This local state park and conservation area features plenty of shady forest and a number of of easy-to-access hiking trails that are perfect for wildflower searches.
Dover Town Forest – Just north of Dover you’ll find the Dover Town Forest, a great place to search for many of the native wildflowers in southern Vermont. A number of paved and natural trails weave around these woods, making them easy to move around and great for all ages.
Woodford State Park – Just west of Wilmington, Woodford State Park features a higher elevation and cooler, shadier climate that lets flowers bloom a little later in the season. It also has several well-maintained hiking trails that make it simple to traverse the otherwise-heavy woods.
Searching for Vermont wildflowers is a great way to experience the natural beauty and environment of our lovely state. Another way is to rent a southern Vermont rental home and stay in comfort and style while you explore all that Vermont has to offer.