Happy 2nd Birthday to my blog! I’m celebrating by changing the look. Also by upgrading the account. OK, actually it’s not celebrating; I’ve uploaded so many pictures that I ran out of space, so I had to upgrade.
young fronds of ebony spleenwort
I’m also celebrating by re-posting some favorite photos. Enjoy.
With three naturally occurring varieties, there’s a common sneezeweed found almost everywhere in the continental US and Canada, except the extreme northwest and northeast. This herbaceous perennial can get up to five feet tall, and likes full sun and plenty of moisture – not surprisingly, this is another plant I found growing along the banks and on the rock outcrops in the lower Potomac Gorge.
Nineteen other native species of Helenium grow in the US. Common sneezeweed and purple-headed sneezeweed are the only ones known in the Gorge.
Apparently the dried, ground leaves and flowers were once used for snuff, hence “sneezeweed”.
Helenium nudiflorum (aka H. flexuosum); Asteraceae (aster family)
There’s not much to say about this plant. It’s found Maine through Texas and parts of the upper Midwest, grows to three feet tall, and has flowers 2 inches across. It likes wet areas, like riverbanks. Looks a little like a coneflower, except that each ray flower has three lobes.
I just really like how this picture came out. I saw a single plant on August 11 and haven’t seen any since. So glad I took the time to get some nice photos.