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Environmental Studies

Anemone quinquefolia (Wood Anemone) Ranunculaceae

The wood anemone is a low, delicate plant that blooms in the spring and into the summer. Interestingly, the white flower of Anemone quinquefolia is not made up of petals, but instead consists of overgrown sepals. This wildflower can be found in wooded areas of the eastern half of the U.S.

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Physical characteristics

Leaf: Whorls of 3 to 5 leaves; each leaf is about 1¼ inches long. The leaves are deeply lobed and have coarse, rounded teeth. They are covered in fine hairs. 

Flower | Seeds: The flower of the wood anemone is made up of sepals, most often white, that give the appearance of petals. There can be anywhere from 4 to 9 sepals but most commonly there are 5.

Life span: This perennial plant is an early spring wildflower that blooms between April and June.

Ecological characteristics

Anemone quinquefolia is native to North America. It grows in moist, open woods, thickets, clearings, stream-sides, and occasionally swampy areas.

Here is a map of the Wood Anemone’s range, provided by the USDA.