“Georgia O’Keeffe would so approve,” wrote today’s photographer, Claire Woods@Flickr. Indeed; for while the close-up of the flower itself would have pleased the Wisconsin-born artist, I suspect that the flower’s shape would have gone some way toward capturing her imagination as well.
Dicentra uniflora has settled upon being in the Papaveraceae (the poppy family), in the subfamily Fumarioideae (for those familiar with it being in the old Fumariaceae). Dicentra, which includes the bleeding hearts, counts about 20 species among its numbers, the majority of which are native to Asia and North America. Species generally put forth bilaterally-symmetrical flowers equipped with swollen or basally spurred outer petals along with inner petals that are oblong to oblanceolate in shape.
Dicentra uniflora, commonly known as the longhorn steer’s head, is an herbaceous perennial plant native to the rocky, sandy, and somewhat elevated soils of North America’s western half “between 1600 and 3700m in elevation”. The variously pink, purple, or white flowers–the curved horn-like shape of which inspires the plant’s common name–are borne singly on erect, leafy stems up to 10cm in length. The plant produces an ovate capsule fruit that measures about 12 millimeters in diameter.