Trillium: Known as "wake robin" because it's a harbinger of spring, three-leaved trillium has a large flower with flaring white petals that resemble a lily. Attractive reddish purple seed capsules form once the flower fades.

Bloodroot: Named for the red sap that oozes from its stalk when cut, bloodroot has a single, perky flower that's either pristine white or tinged with pink. Each blossom lasts only a day or two, but because they form large colonies over time, they get flower power from their numbers.

Jack in the pulpit: Unlike most ephemerals, this plant can grow 1 to 2 feet tall. The Jack is the spike of flowers or spadix, the pulpit is the green or striped green and purple sheath that surrounds him.

Hepatica: When hepatica blooms, tiny white, pale blue or purple flowers, with six to 10 petals each, emerge from the reddish-brown remains of last year's leaves.

Trout lily: This fishy name comes from the spotted leaves, which are said to resemble a brown trout. The flowers also are striking, with white petals that curve backward to show prominent yellow anthers.

Dutchman's breeches: Looking like a flagpole flying white pantaloons, these blooms are borne above attractive, ferny foliage. Occasionally, the flowers are tinged with pink and yellow, explaining their old-time name, Boys and Girls.

Rhonda Hayes