Our native wildflowers - page 2

Plantain pussytoes
(Antennaria plantaginifolia)
 ©Janet Allen Plantain pussytoes

We just got this from the Millersville Native Plant conference. We'll see how it differs from our original pussytoes.

Deer resistance: No
** Attracts predatory or parasatoid insects that prey upon pest insects **
More info from Wildflower Center

Singlehead pussytoes
(Antennaria solitaria)
 ©Janet Allen Singlehead pussytoes

We just got this from the Millersville Native Plant conference. It will be interesting to see how our three varieties of pussytoes differ.

More info from Wildflower Center

Shale barrens pussytoes
(Antennaria virginica)
 ©Janet Allen Pussytoes

I'm pretty sure this is A. virginica, though I had another variety, too, many years ago before I kept track of such things.

It may be hard to tell in this photo, but this plant hugs the ground with the "pussy toes" projecting up about 6 inches. A very good groundcover!

I would have planted this anyway, but I've spread this around since it's a host plant for American Lady butterflies. Note that these have the same kind of whitish fuzz on their leaves as do the pearly everlastings, another host plant for the American Lady. The caterpillars use this fuzz to create little shelters for themselves.

Wild columbine
(Aquilegia canadensis)
 ©Janet Allen Columbine

This is our native eastern columbine—a beautiful red and yellow. Note the tiny little insects. This is a favorite hummingbird flower for the nectar, but I suspect they also like the grab the little insects flying around the plant.

It's no accident that it blooms about the same time hummingbirds return. The columbine depends on the hummingbird just as much as the hummingbird depends on columbine for an early source of nectar.

Wildlife: Nectar for hummingbirds, bees, butterflies, hawk moths; seeds for finches, buntings
Larval host: Columbine duskywing
Deer resistance: Moderate
More info from Wildflower Center

American spikenard
(Aralia racemosa)
 ©Janet Allen American spikenard

We bought this at Garden in the Woods, where we saw its bloom and berry cluster atop a fairly large herbaceous plant. We'll enjoy watching this grow to fill the space in front of the arborvitaes.

The New England Wildflower Society has some information on this plant.

Interesting fact: it's a relative of ginseng.

More info from Wildflower Center

Jack in the Pulpit
(Arisaema triphyllum)
 ©Janet Allen Jack-in-the-pulpit flower

I love the bold stripes. They're surprisingly easy to grow and even to start from seed. In fact I find little seedlings coming up by themselves. It seems too exotic-looking to be so easy.

Wildlife: Berries for birds, mammals
More info from Wildflower Center

Jack in the Pulpit
(Arisaema triphyllum)
 ©Janet Allen Jack-in-the-pulpit berries

After flowering, Jack produces brilliant red berries. When you have a small colony of these plants, the berries provide quite a show.

Goatsbeard
(Aruncus dioicus)
 ©Janet Allen Goatsbeard

Goatsbeard grows amazingly fast. It dies down each year, then shoots up in the spring to become a bush-like 5 to 6 foot plant loaded with these white plumes.

Larval host: Dusky azure
More info from Wildflower Center

Wild ginger
(Asarum canadense)
 ©Janet Allen Wild ginger

Ginger is grown for its foliage, and it makes an excellent native groundcover. It's also a host plant for the pipevine swallowtail butterfly.

Larval host: Pipeline swallowtail butterfly
More info from Wildflower Center