Magentas mark early spring. Be on the lookout for these brief bright bursts before spring has painted the full palette. 

After the Tamarack, or American Larch, has spent the winter needle-less, look for flares of magenta among their unfurling needles – the developing female cones. On the same trees, look for the male cones – round clumps of pollen sacs nestled in paper scales.

Look closely for the tiny magenta eruption of the beaked hazelnut female flowers with their dangling male flowers below.

One of the earliest flowering plants to emerge, Skunk Cabbage creates its own heat. Even on below freezing nights, the magenta-streaked spathe surrounding the flower is able to maintain a temperature of 68°F. This warm shelter is thought to provide “heat stops” for emerging honeybee and fly pollinators.

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