August 24, 2017

O Pioneer

Centaurea maculosa may look familiar, given that its relatives include the iconic C. cyanus (bachelor button) and C. montana (mountain bluet). But this species is not native to North America and is … [Read more...]

On the Hoof

Early settlers are often to blame for the introduction of species to the New World, and such is the case for Tussilago farfara, a European native that is now found far and wide in North America, … [Read more...]

That Stings

Urtica dioica has six subspecies, two of which occur in New England and only one of which is native. Urtica dioica ssp. gracilis is native and can be identified because both the male and female … [Read more...]

Quite the Cosmopolitan

Achillea millefolium gets around, hence the term cosmopolitan. Common yarrow is distributed throughout the Northern Hemisphere and in Maine across a variety of habitats, including alpine or subalpine … [Read more...]

Ode to a Lacy Carrot

If you were to dig up a Daucus carota plant, you would find it has a carrot-like taproot. Which isn't surprising since one of its common names is wild carrot, while a subspecies of D. carota (subsp. … [Read more...]

Not-So-Lonely Asparagus

When a plant has been cultivated for thousands of years, it might not be surprising to find it growing anywhere conditions are good. Such is the case with Asparagus officinalis, best known as … [Read more...]

Big Drain

Some plants can't make it on their own, such as Odontites vernus, or red bartsia. This wildflower comes from a family of plants (the broomrape family) that are either partially or completely … [Read more...]

Lunch for Larvae

The native Asclepias syriaca is a showy wildflower, ranging up to 3 feet in height and topped by umbels of pinkish-purple flowers which give way to huge, warty seedpods that burst open to release … [Read more...]

Rather Seedy

Linaria vulgaris has the ability to produce up to 30,000 seeds from one plant annually. Not surprisingly, this non-native perennial of the plaintain family is considered invasive in many parts of the … [Read more...]

Allergy Alert

Ambrosia artemisiifolia has what may be the most deceptive name if you think ambrosia is the food of the gods in Greek mythology. This plant, however, is the fuel of hay fever and is better known as … [Read more...]