Saturday, August 18, 2012

Wildflowers In the Landscape

As I did a quick walk around the yard this week I found a nice variety of wildflowers growing in the woods. I like this bright yellow little bloom, St. Andrew's Cross, Hypericum hypericoides.  This small woody upright shrub grows all through my woods in the front part of our yard.   It is common throughout the country as far west as Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and as far north as New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts. 


Isn't this a pretty bloom?

Also still blooming in my woods is the Butterfly Pea, Centrosema virginianum see it in the midst of all the greenery?

Next I have something that I am not certain what it is.  At first I thought I had some Joe-Pye Weed, but the stems are not red as in many of the photos others have shared.   My online research has me baffled.  Any ideas?


The leaf arrangement is opposite, though some branches have alternating leaves.  


The flower buds on Joe-Pye Weed is usually above the plant, sitting high above the leaves, not so with this plant.   Thanks to Lisa for confirming that it looks like it is in the Joe-Pye family, I was pretty close.
   UPDATE--
A fellow Master Gardener, Vince has been able to make the ID for this one.  It is Pluchea camphorata,  the website Name That Plant has a good bit of information about this plant.


Ok, now that you all have your thinking caps on, here is another plant that is stumping me.  I researched many online wildflower sights and both of my wildflower books to try to identify this cute flower. This pretty lavender/blue bloom is growing down near the water.  It looks to be a compound flower, each section has its own stamen and pistil.  These individual flowers are arranged on one stem.   The leaves  and stems are fuzzy.


The leaf arrangement is whirled in threes.  There is a good distance between the nodes with a wide branching pattern.  Anyone have any ideas of what this one might be?  UPDATE-  Randy has again given me an identification.  Way to go Randy.  It is Elephantopus tomentosus, common names include- Hairy Elephantfoot or Elephant's Foot, Devil's Grandmother, and Tobaccoweed.  It is a native plant.


Near the mystery bloom above was a plant I know, surprised I have it growing along the shoreline.  I bought one at the local Native Plant Sale a couple autumns ago.  I have Buttonbush, Cephalanthus occidentalis growing in a couple different places!  Wish I had seen it while it was blooming.   This is a butterfly favorite, there is a great specimen in the Learning Garden in Virginia where I used to live.  


I used to enjoy the activity of the pollinators on this shrub when I volunteered in the Learning Garden and wanted to add one to my new garden.  How nice to have the one I purchased AND these great finds growing near the lake.  


Each season I find new wonderful plants in my yard, some I know, some are mysteries.  If you know what my two unknown plants might be, please share!!!  Thanks for stopping by.
Be sure to visit Gail over at Clay and Limestone for Wildflower Wednesday!




©Copyright 2012 Janet. All rights reserved. Content created by Janet for The Queen of Seaford. words and photos by Janet,The Queen of Seaford.

45 comments:

  1. That pink one sure looks like swamp milkweed...great butterfly and pollinator magnet that likes it wet...love the wildflowers.

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    1. Donna@GEV, It does look very similar to Swamp Milkweed, but not it. I have it and love it!!

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  2. Janet,
    To me, the pink flower looks more like a Joe-Pye variant (there's lots of genetic diversity), but I sure haven't ever seen anything like the violet/purple flower! My guess is it's some introduced plant (perhaps a hitchhiker) that's quite attractive, but I don't have a clue what it might be. The flower is quite unusual.

    How nice to have some buttonbush, too-- years ago, I saw a buttonbush COVERED with monarchs during the fall migration (in the coastal plain of SC). Unforgettable.

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    1. Lisa, thanks for the vote for a Joe Pye variant. I love the buttonbush, can't wait for mine to bloom!

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  3. I was going to say swamp milkweed. It is one of the plants I purchased for my garden when I was in Asheville. I doubt if it will bloom but if it does it is late like this one. I purchased a Chinese buttonbush this past fall but so far no seedpod. It's a neat one!

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    1. Tina, I hope your milkweed does ok, I know it had a rough start.

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  4. Janet,
    The pink plant is not swamp milkweed. I see it around marshes here. Best guess is it is related to boneset. The other one I have it here in the yard and have seen butterflies on it, Elephantopus tomentosus (Elephant's-foot)

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  5. My guess is the plant you think is a Joe Pye is a type of milkweed. Boneset is a type of eupatorium, which is a huge genus. I'd get a wildflower guide with color pictures. I find the ones with just drawings really difficult to use.

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    1. Tammy, we sure have a lot of Boneset around too. I did go through my wildflower books, both have color pictures.

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  6. Lovely wildflowers. The St. Andrews's Cross blooms looks like a smaller version of St. John's Wart...I wonder if it is in the same family? I am working on getting better at id'ing wildflowers. I planted a button bush last year but haven't seen any blooms on it yet.











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    1. Karin, thanks! I love finding these pretty wildflowers in my woods. St. Andrew's Cross is a Hypericum, same as St. John's Wort. The flowers on buttonbush are super!!

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  7. Oh you lucky gardener. So many beautiful finds! I love Buttonbush and would love to grow it, but, it sure likes wetter soil! Next week is Wildflower Wednesday, I would love for you to link to this post, if you are so inclined! xogail

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    1. Gail, thanks! I feel pretty lucky when I find these goodies! Glad to share a link on your Wildflower postings.

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  8. Janet, you have some lovely wildflowers growing in and near your yard! I have been finding some mystery plants as well on recent walks. One is a short bush with what looks like little blue bells hanging from the branches. I've looked through three wildflower books but haven't found it. Also there are some yellow sunflower/coreopsis flowers blooming in the woods, but there are so many similar ones in the books it is hard to tell one from another. Guess I need to make friends with Randy!

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    1. Lynn, I do have some really good ones. I know you got your mystery bloom IDed, gotta love fellow gardeners. You need to visit Randy Emmitt's blog. He lives in NC not too far from Durham.

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  9. Your wildflowers are very different from ours, so it is doubly fun to see them. Puzzling over why they would give such a lovely, delicate flower as that lavender one such a string of unwieldy names.

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    1. Ricki, thanks, they are fun to see. I know, some of these names are most unkind.

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  10. Janet,
    The other plant is Pluchea camphorata

    Cheers
    Randy

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  11. You certainly have some lovely wildflowers growing around your property, Janet. How nice to have such helpful bloggers identify the two mysteries for you, too. I thought the pink flowered one looked more like a milkweed, too, though my Joe Pye doesn't have red stems, so I might have guessed that, too. I have a good wildflower book for Illinois with color photos, but even so, I still have trouble identifying lots of wildflowers.

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    1. Rose, It is wonderful to have these knowledgeable bloggers at hand. Great helps! Wildflowers are certainly not easy! A new field of information for me.

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  12. I have no idea what they are but they are sure unique! I am so forgetful, even the plants I usually know, I forget the names for.
    It is good that other bloggers helped you out with the id. That always makes my day.

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    1. Rosey, Glad to see you back. Having blogger help makes my day too. Gettin' by with a little help from my friends.

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  13. Nice selection of wildflowers. I miss getting out this year and seeing what's blooming around here. Been one of those years.

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    1. Kim and Victoria, thanks! Hope your year gets better for more time in the garden.

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  14. You have a great selection of wild flowers on your plot, I am in love with that Hypericum, so dainty. How exciting that each year you spot new things popping up.

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    1. Janet, yes, the Hypericum is very delicate, almost easy to overlook it. Not sure if these were around last year and I missed them or if weather or seed dropping made them pop up here.

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  15. Love that you were able to get id's on your mysteries! Way to go everyone for figuring this out. The elephant's foot is beautiful, what a lucky find.

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    1. Marguerite, I agree! Great to have new plants IDed. Love the bloom on the Elephant's Foot.

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  16. Beautiful!
    Have a wonderful day!
    Lea
    Lea's Menagerie

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  17. Hi Janet, Isn't it wonderful that you can post a mystery and have it solved so quickly by gardening friends. I quite like the structure of the plant and the blooms on the Pluchea camphorata. The Cephalanthus occidentalis is also really interesting.
    I have been photographing wildflowers all summer and keep wondering about incorporating some of these native plants into the garden. The problem is that many are unknown. The last thing one would want to do is to invite a problem home to take over the garden. I must see if I can find a good book on the subject of using natives in the garden.

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    1. Jennifer, I agree, love my fellow gardeners out there!! Wait til I get some blooms on the Cephalanthus, this is the seedpod!
      I know what you mean about not wanting to unleash something into the garden that you may not want down the road.

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  18. I love this time of year, so many small and wondrous wildflowers. Like you, I love to walk in the woods and see what I can find. We have the Hypericum up here and I have to say, you took two dreamy photos of it.

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    1. Donna@GWGT, this time of year with a little rain and pop! lots of wildflowers. Thanks for the comment about my photos of hte St. Andrew's Cross, means a lot.

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  19. I'm wondering if most of the plants you're showing are growing very close to the shoreline. An interesting array you have there!

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    1. DJ, some of the plants are found by the water's edge, but not all. The Hypericum is up near the road as is the Butterfly Pea. I do have an interesting array indeed.

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  20. What an informative post! I always promise myself I will do more careful observation of unfamiliar plants - and sometimes I manage. Thanks for the Name That Plant link.

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    1. Commonweeder, thanks for stopping by. I like the Name That Plant website, good one to keep bookmarked.

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  21. Hi Janet, I saw your comment re the meadow book review on Gardens Eye View. You mentioned you were trying to plant wildflowers on a septic field. I would like to do the same . Are there any issues with roots damaging the system? I would appreciate your advice. Sue

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    1. Thanks for the info. I really appreciate it. Good luck with your meadow. S.

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    2. Susan, thanks for coming by my blog. Glad my info helped. Will post about my meadow-- or lack thereof soon.

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  22. Wow, glad you posted the names of these flowers, I've looked for that "elephants foot" all over the web too, and couldn't find it, so thanks:)

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    1. Hannah, so glad this was here for you!! Love that 'Elephant's Foot'.

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