Can you identify what's in this photo?
Each Wednesday morning
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo.
Readers have all morning and afternoon
to make their best guess about what the photo is.
Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.
Each week's What is it Wednesday post
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog,
the day after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information.
This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on January 16, 2019.
And the answer is....
These are the leaves of teaberry (sharing the scene with moss, lichen, dead leaves, tree bark, and snow).
Teaberry is a small plant that grows close the ground with oval shaped leaves that are a shiny dark green on top all year round, and duller light green underneath. It also produces small white flowers followed by a few dark red berries. Teaberry is also known as wintergreen – the leaves and berries are edible and taste like wintergreen mint. Their best use is in making a minty tea.
There are a few small plants that look similar to teaberry/wintergreen – if you aren’t sure if you’ve found teaberry, break a leaf and smell it. If it smells like mint, it’s teaberry!
One of the delightful things about teaberry is that its refreshing flavor is available all year round! It is most often found on the forest floor near hemlock trees, though it sometimes shows up other places as well.
To find out how you can learn more with LEEP about the refreshing things all around us in nature, check out www.Lutherlyn.com/ee.
Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!