One of my all-time favorite wildflowers is blooming right now, Cimicifuga Racemosa. I've seen it called black cohosh, bugbane, and snakeroot in different books and online, I don't know if one name is more correct than the others. Black cohosh was one of the first wildflowers I noticed when I was younger and was actually able to identify. It's impossible to overlook or misidentify this dramatic plant, it usually grows around 4-7 feet tall and is covered with insects when blooming. It's one of the few plants that grows well under the deep shade of a hardwood forest. In addition to being an incredible pollen provider, it's also a host plant for numerous butterflies, like the Appalachian Azure.
Never before have I seen so many bumblebees so deep in a forest! Unfortunately these pictures were not taken in my yard, I came across these plants on a nature trail, deep in shady ravine. However I do desperately want to add some to my collection. There are a few garden hybrids available, and I have two of them. One is called cimicifuga atropurpurpea, it looks very similar but the flowers smell sweet. The flowers on the wild version smell somewhat stinky. The other is called Kamchatka Bugbane. They both are extremely sun sensitive and prefer to have little to no direct sun at all. I love these plants, and so do the insects!