It seems like one of WNY’s favorite vernal flowers is the Spring Beauty (unofficially according to our Insta & Twitter polls!).
There are two species of Spring Beauty found in our parks, the Virginia Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica) & the Carolina Spring Beauty (Claytonia caroliniana). Carolina Spring Beauty has more oval leaves than the other species and is often the kind you’ll find on your hikes.
While these small blooms are very beautiful, if you were a bee you might see something very different than just a pink and white flower. Our native bees are a type of insect that can see in UV light and the Spring Beauty is one of many flowers that uses UV on their flower parts (in this case the filaments) to direct insects to where their nectar is kept, which they produce a lot of for their size.
Keep a look out in the coming weeks for this flower which usually blooms throughout April in this area.