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Spring blooming starts in the warmer lower elevations,
but it's not long before flowers abound up high.
I took a short walk on the Appalachian Trail to see what was blooming in
the middle of May on this legendary pathway leading from Georgia to Maine.
First to greet me, carpets of Spring Beauty with their delicately
They open when the sun is shining, which is when pollinating insects
are most likely to be active.
Jack-in-the-Pulpit is quite unusual.
Inside the handsome hooded pulpit, or spathe, stands the Jack.
The actual flowers are small and clustered inside the pulpit around Jack's feet.
Wake Robin trilliums range in color from maroon to white, with different
colors found right next to one another in beautiful contrast.
Rose twisted-stalk grows in spruce-fir forests from here to Canada.
It's pink bells hang beneath an arching stem.
Tiny bluets make a big impression in clusters that grow in nooks and crannies
along the trail.
Several plants sit poised for blooming later on, a thrill to the imagination.
It's incredible to imagine what those who hike the entire length
of the Appalachian Trail will see.
But even on this short section of trail near Newfound Gap,
the abundance of wildflowers is magnificent.
If you enjoy identifying wildflowers, you'll want to pick up a copy of
Wildflowers of the Smokies, the handy wildflower guide focused
specifically on what you can find in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
It's available at our website
or at visitors centers throughout the park.