Connecticut State Flower
Mountain Laurel (common name)
Kalmia latifolia (scientific name)
The mountain laurel is a tall evergreen shrub considered one the most beautiful of the endemic American shrubs. It is found on rocky hillsides in the wild but is also a common ornamental plant due to its showy clusters of pink flowers that contrast nicely with its dark green leaves. Native Americans used to make spoons out of mountain laurels and called the plant "spoon wood." The plant was recorded in John Smith’s General History of Virginia, but it was not named until 1750. The laurel was brought to Europe as an ornamental plant during the 18th century and was designated the state flower of Connecticut in 1907.
ALSO KNOWN AS
Ivybush, calico bush, sheep laurel, lambkill, clamoun, spoon wood
Mature Height: 5–30 feet (1.5–9 m) tall
Flowering: May to June
Flowers: 3/4 to 1 inch (1.9–2.5 cm) blooms at the end of branch tips; star-shaped clusters 4–6 inches (10–15 cm) in diameter.
Flower Color: White and pink
Leaves: shiny dark green; elliptical; 2–5 inches (3–12 cm) long; 3/4 to 1 1/2 inches (1–4 cm) wide
Fruit/Seed Color: Brown
Location: Rocky slopes, water edges, and the edges of mountainous forest areas where light filters through the forest canopy.
Range: From Indiana to Maine in the north and from Louisiana to Florida in the south (threatened in Florida, Maine, and New York).
Click to enlarge an image
|Author: World Trade Press|