I was in Superior, Wisconsin last week for work, and once our fieldwork was completed, Tony Troche and I spent a morning checking out several Douglas County preserves. We thoroughly enjoyed botanizing the bogs, muskegs, and boreal forests of the northwoods. One of the highlights for me was finally getting to see Bog Buckbean (Menyanthes trifoliata) in flower. I had seen this species vegetatively a few times, and I knew that the flowers were quite extravagant, but I was blown away when I saw them in person.
Bog Buckbean, which used to be treated as a member of the family Gentianaceae, is now placed in the family Menyanthaceae. It is circumboreal in distribution and known from much of North America, with the exception of the southcentral and southeastern United States. However, it is considered vulnerable to critically imperiled (S1 to S3) in 16 states and extirpated from Delaware. This attractive plant with legume-like leaves and beautifully bearded petals grows primarily in bogs and poor fens, but it can also be found in acidic marshes and pond margins.
I hope to have time to post some of my other photos from Douglas County, Wisconsin, both here and at Get Your Botany On!, at some point in the future.