Dirca palustris, and its diminutive flower

yellow flowering shrub

Dirca palustris, or Leatherwood, is found in the Thymelacaceae family.

Dirca palustris, commonly called Leatherwood or Eastern Leatherwood, is found in the Thymelaeaceae family.  This sweet little native Missouri deciduous shrub is blooming right now right outside of the Tucker greenhouse.  It typically blooms from March to April, but the flowers are so tiny, one could easily miss them blooming in the woods.  The flowers are pale yellow and about a centimeter long. This sweet little shrub prefers to grow in part shade to full shade.  It blooms before the leaves emerge.  After the flowers are pollinated, they produce a green drupe fruit (fleshy fruit with one seed).

The genus name comes from the Greek word for fountain.  The species name means ‘marsh-loving’. This plant does prefer a moist habitat near streams, or rich bottomland.

Wait, that’s a dogwood?

Cornus drummondii, commonly called Rough-leaved Dogwood is blooming in the Tucker Woodland Garden.

Cornus drummondii, commonly called Rough-leaved Dogwood, found in the Cornaceae family, is blooming in the Tucker Woodland Garden.

Cornus drummondii is a small tree or large shrub with opposite leaves that are rough on the top side of the leaf and wooly on the underside.  The flowers are white and bloom in clusters, with each flower having 4 petals.  Rough-leaved Dogwoods are native to Missouri, and can be found growing in dry, rocky woods,  These trees form thickets as they spread from underground stems.