|Gaywings, spring-blooming wildflower|
|Looks like a field of little tiny airplanes?|
Or a bunch of little pink butterflies, alighting on some leaves?
|ready for takeoff...|
And just in case the insects fail to pollinate the flowers and make any seeds, each plant also has a couple of tiny, inconspicuous flowers that are underground and self-fertilized.
Polygala paucifolia is in the Milkwort family, and people once believed that if they fed the leaves of this plant to nursing mothers or dairy cattle, they would produce more milk (in Latin, 'poly' means 'many or much' and 'gala' means 'milk').
Polygala paucifolia is honestly quite hard to find if you are hoping to get some for your garden. I can't find many reports of people propagating these from seeds, or really, too many reports of propagating these at all. The main suggestions seem to be propagation from stem cuttings or by carefully dividing the rootstock. I only found one online source for them: Enchanter's Garden Native Plant Nursery in Hinton, WV (maybe someone else knows of other sources?) You could also try a local wildflower nursery.
For now, I am enjoying them where they are in the woods!
p.s. For a look at other wildflowers that are blooming this May, visit this month's Wildflower Wednesday at Clay and Limestone's blog!