Unusual / atypical

Does anyone have unusual examples of not necessarily uncommon species? For example, an albino of something or a rarely seen blossom formation?

This is the only one I have: a Tridax Daisy but the way the petals were arrayed was unlike any I have seen before or since.

Here is the link because one of the best flower experts in Mexico explains it extremely well in the comments because even though Tridax run rampant through the garden, I was not even sure this was a Tridax those petals were so different.


I have several observations of flowers that are white when they shouldn’t be.
and there is at least one project devoted to aberrants,
There’s probably one for fasciated plants too. Super interesting!


Yes, you are right: Fascinating Fasciation


That is a new word for me, “fasciated”, thank you. So is “aberrants” in that context.

I am unclear if my observation meets what that project is collecting. The petals are just slightly closer to the center of the bloom and while still in their groups of three, they each almost have their own little center and are oriented more jauntily. Is this still considered fasciated? (I could not even begin to address the “quantifiable reason” my little Tridax looks this way as discussed in the project description, I am so far out of my depth!)

Are fasciation and aberration (would those be the right terms or am I making them up?) the only two ways something could be different but still the same species and not a subspecies?

Please let me know if my last question is wildly unclear, which I suspect it is.

Thank you, @bosqueaaron and @teellbee for these resources!

1 Like

Melanistic snails…


Considering it is such a rare thing that we see often, we joke that it’s the same snail… He just gets around.
We call him ‘The Athlete’ considering


Leucistic Black-tailed Prairie Dog Colony | Observation: 8304100


Haha! That’s awesome.

I don’t think your Tridax would be considered fasciated, but if it “looks” different then you could call it an aberrant. That’s a loose term that could mean just about anything out of the norm.

As to the second part of your question, some of these aberrations (fasciation included) arise from genetic mutations and others arise from environmental factors. Something like fasciation, with many possible causes from a virus to frost damage, aren’t likely to be passed on to offspring. Albinism, melanism, leucism may persist as recessive traits, while other mutations may be passed along and could eventually result in a population that might be considered a subspecies or variety.

I hope that helps :)


I’ve never been able to work out what was up with this common ragwort - which had mostly-white petals, instead of the usual yellow. We had a long, dry summer - but every other ragwort nearby was the usual yellow. I’ve not seen one like it before or since.


This prickly lettuce (Lactuca serriola) which wasn’t exactly prickly. For comparison a normal one that looks like I expect it to. Maybe I haven’t seen enough of these?

1 Like

I can’t remember if I’ve iNatted it, but I think I have a photo of a peloric Calopogon tuberosus somewhere.

1 Like

The leaves look prickly in both but the stem does not in the first one. Is it supposed to?

I have only seen one type of wild lettuce and it also had those leaves (but a smooth stem). I did not know it was a wild lettuce, just that there was a mysterious, tall plant growing, with a base of leaves larger than a serving plate. I was so excited, because I just knew it would have some impressive flower when it finally bloomed. It grew taller and taller and then… womp womp.

1 Like

I have some aberrants, but actually nothing too fancy

1 Like

What that Tridax looks like to me is that the rays perhaps formed under the influence of the part of the head meant for discs. They look sort of intermediate between ray and disc flowers.


Remembered I had a few more I guess-

I thought they were interesting enough when I came across them.

And I’m not too sure this really fits; from earlier today…
(not really a normal example)


1 Like

Great womp womp! Those daisy family flowers can be pretty funny that way. In my observation area, we have these where the plant grows chest/shoulder high, but flowers are tiny, only 5 mm across!

I’m not sure what it’s supposed to do. Maybe this is normal behavior, but what really struck me was this: if you look at the lighter part in the middle, underneath the leaf, the atypical one (left) lacks the little hairs whereas the typical one (right) has them:


OK, that difference I definitely see! Could it be like how some gentlemen have more hair and some gentlemen almost no hair but they are still both the same species? (She asked, showing her very non-scientist side spectacularly.)

Meanwhile, I was looking for something entirely different and came across this observation I had completely forgotten. As with the Tridax, I have not seen one like it before or since. I wonder if some mineral its root tapped caused the color change? (She mused, continuing to astound onlookers with her brazen display of lack of scientific upbringing.)


Those are excellent finds, and the stinkbug absolutely fits and is cool looking, too!

1 Like

I guess my favorites are the albino Coast Redwoods; there are several in Henry Cowell State Park in Felton, CA.



I found this Henbit Deadnettle in my backyard with white flowers. Usually, they have purple flowers.