These 2 daisy-like
flowers have a cone shaped dark brown center surrounded by a single layer of yellow-orange
petals. This biennial is very prolific self-seeding annual and can be easily spotted
as you drive through the countryside. The leaves and stems are covered with little
hairs that give it a rough texture.
This stiff single-stemmed
perennial is striking with its long spikes filled with tiny flowers. It is a showy
accent to any garden and is in bloom in Morgan County area gardens right now. One
species, Liatris pycnostachya, is commonly called
Gayfeather. The corms of Liatris were used as food for the early
Old names for this very
common plant were Soapwort and Latherwort after its ability to create soapy lather.
This plant whose flower heads resemble pink phlox have natural cleaning agents.
Early settlers used this plants lather as a cleaner. It was also used to give
beer a foamy lather. It is an herbal remedy for poison ivy.
Some members of this
species resemble flax and some resemble toads thus the name Toadflax. This 3
plant has 1 yellow snapdragon-like flowers. Seeds for Toadflax can germinate
as soon as they are released. In many places Toadflax is considered an unwelcome
As you drive through the
countryside in early summer the roadsides and fields are dotted with brilliant
orange-flowered plant. It is a relative of the milkweed we commonly see. This
two - three foot tall herbaceous plant is, as the name suggests, attracts
butterflies. While once used to treat asthma and bronchitis it is now known to
contain toxic cardiac glycosides.
or Wood Poppy
In spring lovely yellow
poppy-like flowers can been seen blooming from green-blue oak leaf-like leaves in area
woodland settings. They self seed and can be added to a woodland garden. This
one to two foot plant was once used for removing warts and freckles. It is poisonous
Common Blue Violet
This lovely little violet
blooms in profusely from March June. Historically used in salads, cooked as
greens, in fritters, and added to soups and broths as a thickener the basal leaves of this
violet contain 5X more Vitamin C per grams than the equivalent weight of oranges and 2.5X
more Vitamin A than Spinach!
This stately biennial
with silvery-green, velvety leaves is commonly seen around Morgan County. The tiny
yellow flowers dot the top of its long spike-like stem, which was dipped in tallow and
used in Roman times as a torch. Herbalists also used this plant medicinally for
respiratory conditions and inflammations.
Evening Primrose or Fever Plant
This two to three foot
tall biennial primrose has lovely yellow flower is pollinated by the nocturnal sphinx
moth. It blooms from early summer - fall. The primrose was used as an herbal
remedy for coughs and inflammations. This plant is often confused with its relative
the Missouri Primrose (O. missouriensis).
Confused with ragweed as
the cause of seasonal allergies, Goldenrod has a place in history. When the American
colonist dumped tea into the Boston Harbor as a protest against English taxation there was
no tea to drink until someone made Liberty Tea from the leaves of the American
goldenrod (S. odor).
This member of the
Sunflower Family has nutritious edible tubers that can be cooked like potatoes.
Unlike potatoes they do not contain starch, but insulin. These plants can grow up to 10
feet and have 3 yellow flower heads. Jerusalem comes from the
Italian name giraole which means turning to the sun.
or False Dragonhead
This member of the Mint
Family can often be seen growing along side the road and in fields. Tall spike-like
bear purple blooms from June until September. Bent flowers tend to stay in their new
position for a bit, thus the name Obedient Plant. Loves acid soil.
Oswego Tea or Bee Balm
(Monarda didyma L.)
Tea can be made from the
died aromatic leaves, which was also used as a substitute tea after the Boston Tea
Party. Bee Balm attracts moths, bees (pollinators), hummingbirds, and
butterflies. Herbalist once used this member of the mint family as an antibacterial
and antifungal, and for nosebleeds, insomnia, and measles.
As garden favorite and also a
favorite of both butterflies and birds. The butterflies love the sweet nectar and
the birds love the large seed cones. Often bright yellow finches can be seen eating
the seeds. The herbal Echinacea used to treat infections and build the immune system
comes from this herbaceous plant.
Queen Anne's Lace
This common wildflower
was brought to the Americas by early settlers as their carrots. Each flower head is
approximately 500 individual flowers. A spot of red can be found in the center of
its white flower and was said to represent a drop of Queen Annes blood when she
pricked her finger making lace.
Showy Primrose or
This plant produces up to
3 white flowers that fade to pink as they age. Their four-petal flowers only
last a single day and open in the morning unlike their evening blooming relatives.
This hardy and drought resistant 24 plant is often grown in area gardens and blooms
This fleshy rhizome from
the Lily Family bears dainty tubular flowers that dangle gracefully from its unbranched
stems. By late summer the plant will bear blue-black berries eaten by birds and
small mammals. Medieval herbalist strongly believed that Solomons Seal helped
wounds to heal.
Spotted Joe-Pye Weed
The Joe-Pye Weed is
purportedly named for a Native American who used this plant to cure fevers. This 6
foot plant was also used by the early American settlers to treat typhus. This wildflower
has very large pink-purple flower heads atop purple or purple spotted stems and whorled
leaves that can be seen blooming locally from July September.
This showy 7 plant
bears rich purple flower heads on tall straight stems in late summer. Ironweed is
very widespread in Morgan County and is just now starting to bloom. They are very
easily spotted along roads. Ironweed refers to how tough the stem
is. The root was once used by Native Americans to treat post childbirth pain.
Coreopsis or Tall Tickseed
This dainty daisy-like
flower has bright yellow-golden petals with brown centers on long stems. When the
flowers fade this 5 - 8 foot herbaceous perennial produces seeds that resemble ticks, thus
its common name - tickseed. Coreopsis is a member of the Aster Family.
Herbalist once brewed this as a strong tea for internal pain.
Trumpet Creeper or
Sometimes seen locally
around telephone poles this vigorous vine can be easily spotted once its deep rust color,
trumpet-shaped blossoms appear in the summer. Hummingbirds love this plant.
The blooms will become long 6 pods. Some consider this a flower, but many
gardeners consider it an invasive weed.
This small plants
two large heart-shaped leaves often hide its tiny purple-brownish flower. Wild
Ginger only has basal leaves which smell like ginger when rubbed. It has a rhizomes
and loves shady moist habitat. It was used medicinally to treat digestional
disorders. This plant is NOT related to the ginger you find at the