Saturday, May 08, 2010

Aliens Among Us

The Lady Slippers are in bloom at Whites Creek.

There are several wild orchids in East Tennessee but the Pink Lady Slipper is the largest and maybe the showiest of the bunch. They are symbiotic with pines and a certain fungus so they don't grow just everywhere. We feel honored that there are so many patches of them on Whites Creek. 

And so are the Sweet Shrub, but they aren't at their peak scent just yet.

Tree fern fossils don't need a season. Lepidodendrons grew to 150 feet high in the carboniferous age when all of Tennessee's coal was deposited. This is the fossil of the bark of this giant fern. We see the fossils of the fronds and roots all along Whites Creek.


  1. Very nice shots man. I'm afraid I've missed them on Black Mountain, but I'm still afflicted!