Red Trillium at Sunnybrook Forest: Early May 2020

You cannot drive into Sunnybrook / Wilket Creek these days but you can walk or bicycle there.

While walking in the forest, I found one of the loveliest spring wildflowers

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Trillium erectum has several common names: Red Trillium, Purple Trillium, Birthroot, Wake-robin and others. Its foul smell attracts carrion flies that act as pollinators. Early herbalists used this ill-smelling plant to treat gangrene, since, according to medical theory of the time, plants were used to cure the ailments they resembled.

There are many of signs of spring at Sunnybrook. Here are some of the plants:

Spotted Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)
Trout-lily (Erythronium americanum)
Spring Cress (Cardamine bulbosa)
Hop-tree (Ptelea trifoliata)
Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara)
Lesser Celendine (Ficaria verna)
Red Ash (Fraxinus pensylvanica)
Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum)
Winged Euonymus (Euonymus alata)
Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)
Nannyberry (Viburnum lentago)
Ramps (Allium tricoccum)
Japanese Kniotweed (Fallopia japonica)
Horestail (Equisetum)
Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris)
Bitter Dock (Rumex obtusifolius)
White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum)
Forget-me-not (Myosotis scorpioides)
Lily-of-the-valley (Convallaria majalis)
Black Currant (Ribes nigrum)
Apple (Malus)
Red Elderberry (Sambucus racemosa)
Red-osier (Cornus sericea)
Buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica)
Manitoba Maple (Acer negundo)
Duckweed (Lemna minor)
Hop-hornbeam (Ostrya virginiana)
Red Maple (Acer rubra)
Choke Cherry (Prunus virginiana)
Virginia Waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginianum)
Zigzag Goldenrod (Solidago flexicaulis)
Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica)
Dame’s Rocket (Hesperis matronalis)
Norway Maple (Acer platanoides)
Japanese Yew (Taxus cuspidata)
Lichen on fence

Park scenes:

Sunnybrook Stables, which was here for many years, burned down a few years ago. No attempt is being made to rebuild:

former Sunnybrook stables
former Sunnybrook stables


When God had made a host of them,
One little flower still lacked a stem
To hold its blossom blue;
So into it He breathed a song,
And suddenly, with petals strong
As wings, away it flew.                  The Bluebird  – John Bannister Tabb (1845–1909)

Miles Hearn

2 thoughts on “Red Trillium at Sunnybrook Forest: Early May 2020

  1. Judith Weatherhead

    Two days ago I saw a snapping turtle crossing the path from the river to the wetland area in Sunnybrook.

    The colourof the first leaves opening on many trees reminded me of Robert Frost’s poem, “Nature’s first green is gold”
    Thank you Miles for continuing to send us your beautiful photographs.

  2. Lisa Volkov

    Ahhhhh…another one of my favorite places! Such gorgeous pictures. Thank you so much, Miles!


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