Mountain Laurel

Connecticut State Flower

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Mountain laurel flowers

Mountain laurel flowers; photo by Tim Singer on Fickr (noncommercial use permitted with attribution / share alike).

Mountain Laurel

Connecticut designated mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia) as the official state flower in 1907. Mountain laurel is also called ivybush, calico bush, sheep laurel, lambkill, clamoun, and spoonwood (native Americans used to make spoons from the wood). The mountain laurel is one of the most beautiful of native American shrubs.

The fragrant star-shaped white and pink flowers have attracted travelers since early colonial days (first recorded in America in 1624). Mountain laurel is an evergreen shrub native to the eastern United States (from southern Maine to northern Florida and west to Indiana and Louisiana).

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