Jack-in-the-pulpit – 5/13/23

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/13/23

Observation Time: 11:20 a.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary

Common Name: Jack-in-the-pulpit

Scientific Name: Arisaema triphyllum

Comments: Jack-in-the-pulpits grow in largely deciduous forests with plenty of shade. They prefer rich, moist soil and can often be found near wetlands and vernal pools.

In the late summer, after the plant’s flower has been pollinated, it produces a large clump of bright red berries. Each berry contains several seeds, which are spread by birds and other small animals after ingestion.

The plant’s leaves, berries, and corms contain calcium oxalate, which is a chemical compound that takes the form of tiny crystalline structures. Getting this on your bare skin can cause irritation, and ingesting the plant raw can be dangerous, sometimes resulting in choking or blisters. It is therefore recommended to avoid touching any part of the plant unless you’re wearing gloves and other skin protection.

Please do not dig up wildflowers. Leave them for others to enjoy.

More Information: Go Botany