The gift of spring—Manitoba’s prairie crocus
Winter in Manitoba seems to last forever, but as soon as the days start to lengthen, the beautiful prairie crocus begins to bloom, often through melting snow.
What a welcome sight! The dots of light lavender, bluish-purple blooms decorate the white landscape. And if one looks closely, one will see bright yellow stamens inside the blossoms and fine hairs on the flowers and leaves; added protection against sudden frigid temperature changes.
The name ―crocus‖ is a misnomer; these springtime flowers reminded early settlers of the crocus they knew back home. However, the European crocus is a member of the iris family whereas the prairie crocus (Pulsatilla ludoviciana or Anemone patens) is related to the buttercup.
The prairie crocus was adopted as Manitoba’s floral emblem in 1906, but this hardy plant can be grown almost anywhere in Canada. But be patient; this drought-resistant plant will spend the first few years establishing an extensive root system and won’t flower until the third season. After that, count on springtime blooms for a lifetime!
- This is the thirteenth in a series of provincial flowers that started in 1998.
- Crafted in 99.999% pure gold, hand polished to proof perfection and struck to mintage of only 1,400 coins worldwide.
Face Value: 350 dollars
Composition: 99.999% gold
Weight (g): 35
Diameter (mm): 34