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PlantShare

Sightings Locator

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Enter a plant name and we'll show where it's been seen recently.

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Ask the Botanist

Ace Acer

Our ace botanists are here to help you identify wild New England plants and to answer questions about their ecology and conservation. When posting a question, please provide the location, habitat (e.g. river, mountain, woodland), and photographs of the plant.

Everyone can read the answers, but only logged-in users can ask questions. Log in to ask a question.

Recently Answered Questions

  • Question
    Arthur, Are you aware of long-stalked holly, Ilex pedunculosa, spreading into the landscape from ornamental plantings? A single tree which I believe is a young long-stalked holly was found in the southern section of Crane Wildlife Management Area, Falmouth, MA. I am aware of a planted specimen at MAS Ashumet Sanctuary which is nearby.
    Answer
    Donald, good morning. I have not yet seen records of Ilex pedunculosa as naturalized in New England. I've checked around a bit and there are no records of this plant naturalized in North America. If you are certain of this species introduction into MA, it would be a new North American record. Keep me posted please! (Friday, 7 February 2020)
  • Question
    Hi, I live in Canada and found this plant in a pot outside a friend's shop. I took a cutting for a herbarium project but was unable to ID the plant. It is winter here so no flowers are present, and its leaves have turned red. It was in a pot so not sure how tall it grows or if it's part of a shrub. So far I've gotten these guesses but no one is sure: -Pieris japonica -Ascarina rubricaulis -Photinia x fraseri--Red tip photinia Thanks
    Answer
    maliferous, good morning. I am not certain of who this plant is, though it appears Pieris japonica may be a good hypothesis. While I don't know for certain the identification, it is not Ascarina or Photinia (for whatever help that may be). Good luck with determining the answer. (Friday, 7 February 2020)
  • Question
    This fern is growing on a steep shady side of a rocky hill in my yard in Essex County, Byfield, MA. I believe it is Polypodium virginiaum as opposed to Polystichum acrostichoids due to it not having a leaf stem and not having the stocking toed leaf shape. If it is P. virginiaum how is appearance of the fern different than P. appalachiacum (spelling check needed)?
    Answer
    Dear Von, good morning. You have photographed a species of Polypodium, but I cannot tell you which species because there is no image that clearly shows the leaf blade in its entirety (only sections of it). Polypodium appalachianum typically has a slender triangular leaf blade because the lowest leaflets are the longest and the leaftlets tend to be acute at the apex. Polypodium virginiaum has a more oblong leaf blade shape, with the widest point nearer the middle (rather than at the base) and the leaflets are more blunt at the apex. There are other characteristics, but these are the easiest to observe. Best wishes. (Thursday, 30 January 2020)

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