Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Fringed puccoon

with 7 comments

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Here’s another wildflower taking its first bow in this column, Lithospermum incisum, known as fringed puccoon. I made this photograph on a visit to Kathy Comer’s property in Williamson County on March 17. The only other local wildflower I can think of that’s as crinkled, though in quite a different way, is the white prickly poppy.

Fringed puccoon grows over large parts of North America, as you can confirm on the state-clickable map at the USDA website.

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 29, 2012 at 6:08 AM

7 Responses

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  1. Not only have you brought us a new flower, there’s a new word attached! “Puccoon” made me laugh – I see it may be rooted in the Algonquian “pocone” and can refer to the brim of a woman’s bonnet. Another source mentioned the Middle English for “bag” or “sack”. Both meanings seem just fine for this lovely flower.

    shoreacres

    June 29, 2012 at 7:01 AM

    • The American Heritage Dictionary, whose etymologies I take to be the most accurate of those in any dictionary, says that puccoon is indeed of Virginia Algonquian origin. The original word, which conveyed the notion of redness, is also found in the poke of pokeweed, which has reddish-purple berries. In the case of puccoon, the roots yield a red dye. As for the woman’s bonnet and the bag, I don’t know what the connection might be, unless they happened to be red.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 29, 2012 at 7:20 AM

      • I presumed the bonnet link might have been because the fringed brim of bonnets like those my grandma wore in the garden “poke out” to shade the face.

        shoreacres

        June 29, 2012 at 7:25 AM

  2. Gorgeous!

    montucky

    July 2, 2012 at 12:32 AM

  3. Lovely flower, great name.

    Finn Holding

    July 4, 2012 at 3:45 PM


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