Friday, January 14, 2011

Pacific Bleeding Hearts (Dicentra formosa)

Flowers have two tiny sepals and four petals. The petals are bisymmetric: the two outer ones are spurred or pouched at the base and curved outwards or backwards at the tip, and the two inner ones are straight and connected at the tip.
The genus Dicentra is distinct from other genera with bisymmetric heart-shaped flowers (Lamprocapnos, Dactylicapnos, Ichtyoselmis, Ehrendorferia) in that the flower stem lacks leaves and all leaves are in a basal rosette.
Each of the two compound stamens is composed of four stamens fused together. The stamens and pistil are held between the inner petals.
Seeds with elaiosomes are borne in long pods.
All parts are poisonous if ingested.

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