Jack in the Pulpit Drawing

Nature can be so very clever on how it allows one species to trick another into helping it. In the case of the Arum maculatum insects are attracted deep down into the flower. They are temporarily trapped and during their escape will be dusted with pollen from the male flowers.

This species is known by a long list of names including: snakeshead, adder’s root, arum, wild arum, arum lily, lords-and-ladies, devils and angels, cows and bulls, cuckoo-pint, Adam and Eve, bobbins, naked girls, naked boys, starch-root, wake robin, friar’s cowl, and jack in the pulpit. It was included in the 1911 Encyclopedia and they referred to this plant as a cuckoo-pint. I’ve always known them as jack in the pulpit.

jack-in-the-pulpitThis jack in the pulpit drawing shows all stages of the plant’s life cycle. The labels on this botanical drawing are as follows:

1. Leaves and inflorescence.

2. Underground root stock, including the rhizome or tuber.

3. Lower part of the spathe cut open.

4. Spike of fruits. Showing in succession (from below) female flowers, male flowers, and sterile flowers forming a ring of hairs born on the spadix.


This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.