I introduced you to this spiny plant in my last wildflower posting, Texas Mala Mujer. Since then, I’ve discovered a few more interesting facts about the plant. First, the Oklahoman common name is Bull Nettle. Second, the flowers have an incredible smell. Lastly, hummingbirds feed on them.
I wandered into a veritable field of these beauties, in the deep sand behind the house, during my weekly walkabout. While I was enjoying the smell, a little hummingbird came buzzing by stopping at every flower.
I found Goat’s Beard along side the Bull Nettle. The flower is not particularly impressive but the seed heads look like dandelion puffballs on steroids, about the size of a tennis ball.
In my clay soil I found Horse Nettle, a member of the tomato family. In the fall it will produce poisonous yellow fruit. Something to look forward to.
This Slender Day-flower was also found in the heavier soil. As the name suggests each flower lasts a day. Luckily, a plant will produce many flowers throughout the growing season.
Daisy Fleabane is coming up here and there on the property, most are along the roadside. Apparently, Native Americans would use the smoke from this plant as an effective repellent of fleas and gnats.
The understory of woods behind the house is now dotted with blooming trees. This is a native dogwood tree, the Rough-leaved Dogwood. Later in the year it will produce berries the birds enjoy.
Out front I found my first Indian Paint Brush. This flower has been blooming along the roadsides for weeks now and I had already put this species down on my “seeds to order” list. I happened to be checking on the Scissortail nest, and discovered the lone Paint Brush.
This last flower deserves more than one photo, because it’s my absolute favorite. I love the color. This one is appropriately named Wine Cup, and it’s a member of the Mallow family, related to Hollyhocks. I thought I’d have to put this one on the “seeds to buy” list as well, but I’ve discovered three healthy patches so far.
This week has been somewhat frustrating in the plant identification department. I’ve photographed at least 5 other flowers that I’ve been unable to identify. I’m hoping to enlist the help of the local Native Plant Society.