Sunday, October 28, 2012

Lipstick Latin Pars Duo: What's In a Name?

Lipstick Latin” appears to be the most viewed post on my blog. So I guess it's time for another dip into taxonomy and botanical Latin.

As explained in that prior entry, my adventures in Latin were based on academic insecurity and intellectual romanticism: I believed that smart, credentialed people knew Latin. Therefore, a light application of Catullus or Livy might make me at least appear fit for Academia.  In addition, since I had rather pronounced stage-fright when it came to speaking a foreign language in a classroom, Classical Latin, not truly “spoken” for about twelve or thirteen hundred years, seemed ideal: reading and translating, not conversing. Neither Caesar nor Ovid required one to say “Where is the bus station?” or “Those yellow shoes are too expensive.” Perfect! However there was one teacher in the Classics Department who insisted that Latin, while linguistically static, was alive in the hills and in her classroom. And one day when our much more traditional professor was off at a conference, she appeared. Poor woman; she greeted us in Latin, and we just sat there. She asked us questions (in Latin) and we just stared at her. She even tried to get us to sing with her (in, God help us, Latin) and we sat, stared, and rolled our eyes. After about 15 minutes of this, she gave up the fight and returned to Caesar's wars.

So, no conversation, no worries about correct pronunciation—no one really knows how it sounded since no one speaks (or sings) it any more. Admittedly, there are some straight-forward rules from Classical Latin, but they are not always followed. So when attempting to speak the scientific names of plants, William T. Stearn, eminent botanist and author of, wait for it, Botanical Latin, maintained that “How they are pronounced really matters little provided they sound pleasant and are understandable by all concerned.” Hi Five, my man!

But why Latin for plants? So-called “Common Names” are easier to remember (and say). And they're so much more colorful.  I mean, who wouldn't rather ask for “Pussytoes” than Antennaria neglecta?

Now I could get all academic on you and be thorough and very, very long. But this is a blog, and I'm not a taxonomist (though I do like the word).

Although common names might seem, well, friendlier, they're not always reliable. For example, if I refer to the lily I'm growing outside my kitchen window, you might get a kind of generalized mental picture, but you are also likely to be wrong. There are over FIFTY genera (plural of “genus”) of plants whose common name contains the word “lily.”
Hellebore (Helleborus spp.)
Then there are rather inexact variations on established common names using the modifier “False” like False Lily-of-the-Valley, False Solomon's Seal, False Spirea, False Hellebore, etc. Sort of like identifying someone as “Not Murray.”

False Hellebore (Veratrum viride)
So ask me again: why Latin for plants? Short answer: one dead (i.e. unchanging) language + one name = we all know which plant we're talking about.

Thanks to Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), scientific plant names are Latin or Latinized and binomial (consisting of two parts). The first part indicates the genus and the second is the specific epithet or species epithet. Together they form the species name. In written form, they are both italicized, but only the genus begins with a capital letter. When using the genus without a species epithet, the genus can be followed with unitalicized sp. or ssp. for single or multiple unnamed species.

The names themselves can be useful, but not consistently.
Some indicate physical characteristics: alba=white, sanguineum=blood-red, hirsuta=hairy, campanula=small bell (referring to the flower shape),  foetida=having a bad smell.  But there are other name-sources. 

Ribes sanguineum
Geographical place-names or habitats:  japonica=from Japan, chinensis=from China, alpina=from the alps, sylvestris=of the woods.

Latinized names of people, real or fictional: Abelia spp. for Dr. Clarke Abel, (1780-1826) British naturalist; Forsythia spp. for William Forsyth, (1737-1804) Scottish horticulturist; Hyacinthus from Greek mythology: the youth loved by Apollo. In one version, the West Wind god, Zephyrus, caused his death out of jealousy, and Apollo created the flower from his spilled blood.

Hypericum Androsaemum 'Albury Purple'
But then there are names like Hypericum which is thought to be derived from the Greek hyper for "above" or "over" and eikon for "image" or "apparition." It may have been used to ward off evil spirits or possibly hung above pictures or religious icons for protection. Though not too helpful in terms of matching Latin name to physical plant, it is interesting from a medicinal point of view. For centuries, Hypericum perforatum (St. John's Wort)   has been used to treat a variety of ills. Currently it is prescribed widely in Europe to treat depression, an evil spirit if there ever was one. 

Learning the scientific names of plants is enormously useful as well as occasionally entertaining.  And it's a whole lot more fun than translating sections of Caesar's Commentaries.  But I admit I still get a kick out of asking for "pussytoes."



Tuesday, October 2, 2012

End of Summer Glare

I love it. I love the first touch of fall because it means my summer suffering is almost over.  I know it sounds odd, ungrateful, or just plain stupid coming from someone living under sheets of wet and grey for several months out of the year, but summer gets old fast. Unblinking, it insists we look it squarely in the face and rejoice.  Yeah, well, not what I moved up North for.  I'm grateful on behalf of my tomatoes.  That's about it. Too flat. The light is too flat. Shadows too sharp. Summer presses down on the brain, squishing thought, expelling romance.  A big, dumb grin of peonies and ox-eye daisies. 

Anemone hupehensis 'Prince Henry'
OK, maybe summer isn't THAT bad.   Tactless, promiscuous.  But throws a good party.  And many flowers that are said to bloom in fall, actually begin in late summer. Anemones come for the party in July, but stay late for the long talks in September.  I swear they look different this time of year, more intelligent, less perky.  Even a little pensive.  Bonjour Tristesse?  

I originally planted a Blue Mist (or Blue Beard) shrub for fall flowers.  But when it first bloomed, I kept saying, "That's it?  That's all there is?  Just little patches of blue bumps along a stem?"  But softer light, nerves steeled against the constant blanket of bees, and a macro lens bring out the turquoise anthers waving above those purple petals and the blue-green leaves.  An animated boutonniere. 

Caryopteris x clandonensis 'Dark Knight'
Even the unfortunately named "Leadwort" takes on a bit of glamour in the long, autumn light.  Like the peach-colored light bulbs used at the Moulin Rouge because they improve the look of women's skin (or so I've heard), flowers opening against a background of browns, reds and oranges have a kind of glow.

Ceratostigma plumbaginoides

The beginning of fall brings the last days of Chinese Astilbes.  Thanks to a friend who gave me two or three, I went from having the equivalent of a decorative throw-rug to wall-to-wall carpeting.  But it's now that I appreciate them most, when only a few resist brown for a moment more.  Improbable details of color I couldn't see in the summer glare.

Astilbe chinensis
 But fall hasn't taken taken off her coat just yet.  It's only the dawn of October; the woods still wait.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Bit of Botany: Stamens & Pistils

As a child, I asked and asked for a microscope.  It's not that I wanted to be a scientist; I just liked seeing things up close. Staring at the way a leaf dried into brown and gold curves could entertain me for a lot longer than the Betsy-Wetsy doll from Aunt Edith.  No, there was nothing wrong with my eyes and not much wrong with my brain; I just found details more compelling than the “big picture,” (and dolls that peed weren't exactly stimulating).  Our eyes sweep by gardens so quickly. Too much is lost, left as a dot of yellow or a smear of purple. How much of a vista can a brain process?  And though I can enjoy that moment of beauty, I'm not fully engaged.  I'd rather sit in the first row and get hit by the sweat from a pirouetting dancer than sit in the last to coolly admire the choreographic designs. I really like intimacy.

Photographic intimacy.  With plants.  Let me say now that I really hate those people portraits where the bigger the person's pores, the more successful the photographer thinks he's been. I just want to wash my face and clean my lens.

But stamens, I really like stamens. I like how they reach out, reach up. Wave around. Attention-seeking. With fairy dust. Yes, I have pollen allergies, but magic is magic and sneezing is simply another way shouting “shazam!”
Too much? OK, I just like how they look. 

Trientalis borealis
 Botany 101 minus 10: stamens of a flower are collectively referred to as the androecium ( meaning: little house of man, or something like that). A stamen has an anther, which waves about, sprinkled with pollen (as Walt Whitman would put it “the father stuff”), held aloft by a filament.
The gynoecium (yes, little house of woman) refers to a collection of one or more carpels or pistils, depending on whom you read. I'm going with “pistil” because its got a kind of Annie Oakley ring to it (though I think she used a rifle.) The pistil is composed of a stigma, which takes in the pollen, a style, the hollow tube the pollen travels down to the ovary which houses the ovule. And I'm assuming you can use your imagination for the rest.  The Starflower above has seven stamens and one pistil at the center.

Using a Macro lens lets you get close enough for what I sometimes refer to as the OB/GYN view of a flower as seen with this Hellebore on the right.   Some might find this shot a bit off-putting, but I LOVE how amazing the flower structures are.  The pistils rise above the swarming stamens like underwater creatures swimming through oceanic vegetation.  And those gold-green tubes all around?  Those are the nectaries, also known as honey leaves.  The insects have to fly into the nectaries to get the nectar, and as they go in and out, pollen adheres to them which then gets transferred to the stigmas.

But, for me, these botanical contemplations breed metaphors rather than taxonomy.  After all, I'm a writer not a scientist.  When I stare at the St. John's Wort below, marvel at the numerous stamens seeming to burst from the base of the pistil, I see a celebration, just-launched fireworks on a grand yet tiny scale.

Hypericum androsaemum “Albury Purple”


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

An Eccentricity of Color: Blue Flowers

When I was a child, Red was synonymous with Flower: hibiscus, bougainvillea, and roses. Maybe there was one pink hibiscus growing somewhere, a shy afterthought in a garden that had never been thought out. And the thoughtless, scarlet Oleanders. The PTA sent us home with cautionary tales of poisonings and urgent requests to uproot the notorious vegetation. That we were harboring a killer in our yard was kind of thrilling to an eight-year-old but horrifying to my parents. So flowers were red and flowers could be dangerous.

But not yellow ones. I try to like yellow flowers. I really do. There's just so many of them. 
And they're so, well, “sunny.”
Years ago, when I was a dancer in a college theater department, we had the “opportunity” to work with a “movement therapist.” Yes, yes, the quotation marks are swarming. How else to indicate to the reader a raised eyebrow, a wrinkled nose, or a brief curl of the lip? Anyway, “a very nice lady” (curl of the stomach) appeared in a tie-dyed leotard and tights (and scarves, there MUST have been scarves). She lowered the lights, gave us some breathing exercises, told us to “feel” ourselves becoming a flower, and then to move around the room expressing said flower. . . . Can I tell you how much I did not want to feel myself to be any flower whatsoever much less MOVE like one? It was the very early 70s and I wore all black and thick black eyeliner. Basically, I was Goth in a psychedelic world.
Anyway, every person in that room began to sway and then to skip and then to twirl, murmuring “I'm a daisy” (I kid you not), “I'm a buttercup,” “I'm a marigold” (his mother must have gardened). Red clearly was too dangerous, too sexy and purple too royal, too bold, because every last one of them chose to be a cheerful smudge of yellow. I wish I could tell you that I became a Scotch Thistle or some sort of fungus. But I was too dark a soul for irony and too shy for outright rebellion. So I left.

Eventually I gardened, growing red, purple, green, white, and, yes, even yellow flowers. But the blue ones are different. An achievement. A gift. A discovery every single time.  I don't know why. It's not like there aren't loads of blue flowers that grow easily. So why do they feel so uncommon?  An eccentric color for a flower.  Skies are blue; water is blue; flowers are red or yellow or some variation.  Blue flowers take some thought.  Unnatural by their very nature.  And just a little bit odd.

Borage.  What a tedious name for an herb.  It sounds like a purgative or good-for-you-but-nasty fiber.  But who cares what it's for or what it's called when the flower glows from either side. 

Borago officinalis

 A neighbor tried to give me a weedy-looking plant he swore was chicory.  I didn't need any more invasives and it was ugly anyway.  I stuck the pot in a corner and ignored it.  I didn't water it, didn't feed it, didn't remove the (other) weeds growing over, around and in the same pot with it.  Until this happened:
A celebration of a flower.  A chorus of anthers.
Cichorium intybus

 Love-in-a-Mist, an annual that reseeds with a promiscuous abandon is found in any collection of flower photographs.

Nigella damascena

But after taking more and more time with it, shooting more slowly, and then processing more deliberately, it began to take on the density of an oil painting.


 Last is a flower I've not yet grown.  I have the seeds, and gardeners far more knowledgeable than I have given me detailed instructions but also have cautioned me to lower my expectations.  Blue Poppies.  They are tricky to grow, but might be bliss to dance.


Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Vacation Garden: some of us are looking at the Astrantia

Imagine my horror when I returned from a two-week vacation to find that my garden had continued to grow—wildly grow—without me. How dare I leave town in spring (or summer or fall)?  Apparently the rain had come down and the sun had shone and the temperature had remained moderate to warm. So the garden had done what gardens do in such conditions: it sprouted, grew, and died all at the same time. And it did it all without me. It's like coming home to accusing stares from children whose birthdays you missed or the wreckage from teenagers who partied in your absence. And let's not even look for a metaphor for the weeds that multiplied in unthinkable numbers.

And where do I start? The Lupines have more stalks gone to seed than flowering ones, and powdery mildew blankets almost every stem that doesn't have an occupying slug. The Rhodies, blooming when I left, are studded with spent flowers. Branches of brown petals mark the locations of the Azaleas. And the gravel path through the beds is now a bed for errant grasses, multiple varieties of Willowherb, and dandelions.  The Creeping Yellow Buttercup (the invasive Ranunculus repens) has crept into everything from the Japanese Bloodgrass to the Chinese Astilbes. 

The vegetable garden is a mess: all the Arugula and most of the lettuces bolted; winds and rains knocked the sugar-snap peas off the teepee trellis, bending the major stems thus killing off the leaves and peas above the break; and the peppers have simply vanished--the work of rabbits I imagine (hmmm . . . or rabbits I can't imagine). Only the garlic and tomato plants seem immune to my absence.

Then there is the massive tangle that is the blooming, fruiting garden, surprised just in-between: the Nigella flowers pushing up through branches of fruiting Red-flowering currants; Oregano barely avoiding the the sharp spines of the Rose Glow Japanese Barberry; and the Catmint splayed in the walkway, heavy with blooms and bees.

And though I did photograph all of this--truly I did--I post none. As mentioned (time and time again), I still struggle with taking garden shots that include more than a plant or two. Well, I can take the shot, but the final image is just too boring.  After a week in Newfoundland, I find that I can take landscapes, but still no medium-angle garden shots.

So here's a single rain-beaten Geum coccineum 'Borisii' compared to one that escaped the deluge:  

Astrantia major
But then there are the Great Masterworts--fabulous name--towering above the carnage of rain, wind, slugs and weeds.  And I feel hopeful again, and, for me, it is once again spring.

Astrantia major 'Abbey Road'

Astrantia major 'Abbey Road'

(with apologies to Oscar Wilde):  We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the Astrantia.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Flower Buds, Macro Lenses, and Finding Your Moment

I got into shooting with a macro lens from seeing a photo on one of the photography forums I like—I'll list them below. It was of a witch hazel bud just beginning to open. Magic!  Fireworks!  And a lot like that crinkly ribbon you can run a scissor blade across to make sausage curls as a final touch to gift-wrapped presents. That photo made me want to get a macro lens and grow my own witch hazel.

 It took me two years to find an affordable witch hazel and then another couple of years for it to flower.  This year was the first.  Now it will take me a few more years to find the image I have in my heart, still resonating from the first one I saw on-line.  Something to look forward to around the end of December and the beginning of January.

I researched lenses--I shoot with a Canon, so I stuck with them.  And then rented a 100mm and a 60 mm macro. Glad I did. (By the way, renting lenses is a great way to go when you're trying to decide what to spend way too much money on.  On-line opinions and looking through a lens in a camera store will only take you so far).  They're both wonderful and the only differences really are price, weight, and how close you need to get. If you're taking shots of bugs who might scare easily or if you don't like getting nose-to-petal with a flower, the 100 is it. Then again there's the 180, but that wasn't even on my radar. A girl's got to eat, you know. The 60 is cheaper, lighter, and flowers don't seem too concerned about personal space. And once I got it through my thick head that a decent tripod was crucial, I was set.

Almost. Along with waiting for the right light and having the right equipment, the biggest headache for taking botanical macros is wind. Air actually. Just the briefest little puff will start the petals trembling and the leaves waving all about. And unless you want to crank up the ISO or shoot so wide open that only the yellow speck of pollen at the closest leaf edge is in focus, you've got to wait. And wait. And fire off a few frames with your fingers crossed. And wait some more. HOWEVER, buds—leaf as well as flower--have the good grace to sit bloody still! A lot may be going on inside, but the outside is serene. Their density and lack of quivery surfaces make them a lot more stable. No flashes, no portable studios, just graceful nature waiting for me to get my settings right.

 This Rhododendron is a good example.  That lovely flower has enough tissue-paper thin petals and shuddering anthers to blur in a vaccuum.  OK, I exaggerate (often), but still.  That amazing bud, with the folds of petals interlaced with the sturdy sepals can really hold a pose.  

It also amazes me how the petals here look like a rich, Asian silk.  And, unlike my packing, when they unfold, no creases remain.

There's also a subtlety to a flower bud.  All that potential, all that promise only hinted at.  I bought this Speedwell below (Veronica spicata 'Giles van Hees') because the flower buds were "demure" yet dramatic.  I don't know how else to say it.

And while the flowers themselves are pretty, for me, they can't compare to the "romance" I see in the buds.

 But sometimes the drama, the energy, and the beauty can be found at the same moment, in the same plant, flower and bud, still enough to capture.

Thalictrum 'Black Stockings'  (Meadow Rue)

Good Photography Forums 

Helpful Sites for Choosing a Lens 

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Shooting Edge-On

Walk through any public garden in spring, and you'll see strollers admiring the flowers. Stooping slightly, they'll pull their cameras to their faces, position the viewfinder or LCD parallel to the ground, and snap shot after shot of those sunny, open, plant-catalog blossoms. Every detail in focus, the colors bright and depthless, seemingly honest in their accessible flatness.  Everything revealed.  Maybe.  Seeing everything isn't always the same as experiencing everything.  And “tack sharp” isn't always the gold standard in plant photography. At least not for me.

Sitting on the ground, is when I really take the time to look closely at a flower. It's the view of rabbits and cats, who take little notice. And only when I pause in my weeding or planting do I.  Eye-level and edge-on, I see moods (theirs or mine, I don't really know). And it's the ironic gift of a camera's shallow depth of field, revealing more when some edges are left unedged. When far petals softly echo (or contend with) those close by. 

Hellebores present an interesting challenge.  Most of them face downwards.  It's frustrating when you think of "flower" as full-on, open face.  Before putting this newly acquired Helleborus x hybridus 'Mardi Gras Pink' in the ground, I pulled its face upwards to get some shots.

That's a face alright.  And you get to see the pretty design on the petals and the anthers and pistil.  Open and honest . . . and, to my taste, sort of boring.
After awhile, I planted it and moved on.  Then, a week or so later, I was kneeling in the bed, weeding, when I found myself watching the Hellebores.  

Some facing down, some facing away, and all of them beautiful in their restraint; almost coy or maybe simply demure.  Like the edges of a parasol, the petals suggest something precious shielded from the heat of a direct gaze. 
So out came the camera and tripod.  Flat on my stomach, chin in the dirt to look through the viewfinder, I found an angle that gave me a much better sense of what this flower actually is, at least for me..  Same variety, but in a more characteristic position.

Getting every detail of a macro shot in focus is fun, I'll admit it.  You feel like you've mastered something, captured something your eyes don't always have time to observe in even a careful glance.  But shallow depth of field can highlight a single detail or a shape that says far more about the charm as well as the complexity of a flower.

I bought some African Daisies (Osteospermum 'Astra Purple Spoon' and 'Astra Pink Spoon') to photograph because I couldn't resist those spoon-like petals.  After trying all sorts of angles, I sat down next to the table I'd placed outdoors to position them at a more convenient level--it was muddy outside and I wasn't in the mood to change pants.  Glancing over at them, I saw that I could express how bright and playful they seemed to me by shooting from the edges and working with much less in focus.

The 'Purple' to the left beckons to the viewer with its alien-pod petals, while  the 'Pink' below appears to be lit from within, and the trumpeting colors in both seize the focus.
Lastly, one edge-on image I especially love is this Anemone 'Honorine Jobert.'  Earlier in my life, I was a dancer.  And this flower at this angle says so much to me about the quiet center, the "still point," at the apex of a leap or the core of a pirouette, or the lift of an arabesque.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Getting To Know the Natives
(Part Two)

Returning to the project of photographing all the native plants on our guided walk through Stimpson Family Nature Reserve in leaf, flower, and fruit. Did I mention that most of Stimpson is in a forest? So it's kind of dark.  And often breezy. And using a flash feels like cheating (and looks like it too).  And hunkering down with your tripod, hoping for a moment where you can get a fast enough shot to get SOMETHING in focus, but at a low enough ISO to prevent image noise as other hikers have to creep around you, week after week after week might seem tedious.  Frustrating.  Boring?  Actually, weirdly, it wasn't.  It became a passion as well as a project.  Clearly, to get all the images we needed, we would have to look beyond our three-mile, three month project.  So we found ourselves becoming plant-hunters.  
Birds really do get up earlier than we do, so finding a plant that hadn't been picked clean of fruit was often a challenge.  When you point out something called Salmonberry 
(Rubus parviflorus) to people who have signed up for a native plant walk, they'd at least like to see a picture of the berries actually growing.  We scoured every local trail until we found a single, under-ripe berry and a couple of others just beginning to form.                                  
   On a walk around Lake Padden--another local park--we ran into a huge Red Elderberry (Sambucus racemosa) covered in fruit.  Of course the people sunbathing nearby thought we were nuts as we ran gleefully around a bush snapping photos when there was a gorgeous lake right behind us. Then there was the time we went to an open house at Pilchuck Glass School—founded by Dale Chihuly—and spotted some False Lily-of-the-Valley (Maianthemum dilatatum fruiting! The dark forest was the culprit this time. We'd never seen our little patch flower, much less produce berries. We jumped off the walkway to get closer and took more shots of the marble-like berries than of the glass art.

And then there was Rattlesnake Plantain (Goodyera oblongifolia) whose flower stalk mocked us for two months!   But we'd only seen it look this promising back at Stimpson. 


We ran out to the park every couple of days, checking several likely specimens that appeared just on the verge of blooming until FINALLY one did! But not where we'd been looking.  Off the trail, on a slippery hillside was a single orchid (yes, they are orchids) whose tiny, tiny flowers had louvered open.  Stomach on the ground, bracing a cheap tripod with one shoulder and myself with my toes, I got the shot. It may not be “Adventure Photography,” but plant-tracking has its rewards.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Getting To Know the Natives
(Part One)

For our Whatcom County Master Gardener project, David and I chose to give native plant walks at a relatively new park: The Stimpson Family Nature Reserve. We wanted to take groups of people on easy hikes where we would help them learn to identify local native plants. Nice idea except for the fact that we had just moved here from Los Angeles and couldn't tell one fern from another (and frankly, I wasn't exactly all that certain what “deciduous” meant).

Luckily, there were lots of opportunities to learn. We went on plant ID walks with some experts (one lovely MG went with us in late April when it snowed while we bent over tiny specimens trying to shield our open books) and took photos (lots and lots of photos). We eventually compiled a list of 60 native plants that could be identified (that WE could identify) on our walk. 

Which brings me to the next problem:  identifying what isn't there. Neat trick. Basically, it is sometimes difficult to identify a plant that isn't flowering; and plants flower, fruit, or even appear at all at different times of the year.  How much fun is it to go on a native plant walk and be told that the bunch of green leaves on your left will turn out to be either Fringecup (Tellima grandiflora) or Piggy-Back (Tolmiea menziesii), but we won't know for sure until it blooms?

This one's the Fringecup


Piggyback closeup

How enthusiastic would you feel about looking at 3 oddly-shaped leaves and hearing that the Trillium--(Trillium ovatum)--is one of the most beloved, early flowers here in the Northwest, but you're too late to see it?

And how much would you really enjoy stopping at a bog and being told that sometime in late summer the stunning Mexican Hedge Nettle (Stachys mexicana) will emerge. Trust us.

Mexican Hedge Nettle

I'm all for using your imagination, but this seemed like too much too ask for a two-hour walk.

Some other MG friends who also gave plant walks solved this problem by carrying a flip-book of photos of the flowers in bloom. Genius! So we set about photographing our plants in leaf, in flower, and in fruit. Perfect!  But also a new set of problems.  

More about that next time.

Suggested Resources For Northwest Plant ID

Lyons, C. P. and Bill Merilees. Trees, Shrubs & Flowers To Know in British Columbia & Washington. Redmond, WA: Lone Pine, 1995.

Pojar, Jim and Andy MacKinnon. Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast. Vancouver, BC: LonePine, 2004.

Taylor, Ronald J. Northwest Weeds: The Ugly and Beautiful Villains of Fields, Gardens, and Roadsides. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 1990.

Turner, Mark and Phyllis Gustafson. Wildflowers of the Pacific Northwest. Portland, OR: Timber Press, 2006.