Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Wednesday's Wildflower: Star Anise & Florida Anise

Illicium spp., Anise
submitted by Tom Palmer, Heartland Chapter

Florida has two native species of anise that look quite different and are found in very different regions of the state. Both bloom in spring.

Star Anise

Star Anise, Illicium parviflorum, Photo by Tom Palmer
The Yellow Anise Tree/Star  Anise, Illicium parviflorum, is found in hydric hammocks in a handful of Central Florida counties from Marion to Polk. It reportedly once occurred in Georgia, but has been extirpated. While classified as endangered in Florida, it is locally common in places such as the Marion Creek Basin in northeast Polk County.The type specimen was collected in 1799 in Marion County.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Eastern bluestar

EASTERN BLUESTAR
Amsonia tabernaemontana Walter
Dogbane Family (Apocynaceae)

Submitted by Roger Hammer

Eastern Bluestar, Rover Hammer, roadside ditch along SR65 near Apalachicola.
This perennial wildflower reaches 3' tall with smooth stems and lanceolate to elliptic leaves from 3–4" long and ¾"­–1" wide (the uppermost leaves are sessile). It can form large, multi-stemmed clumps and is easy to see when in flower. Pale blue, ¾", star-shaped flowers are in terminal clusters. Flowering season begins in March and lasts into August so look for it in the floodplain forests of the Florida panhandle east to Columbia, Alachua, and Levy Counties. It ranges across the eastern United States to Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas, and is on its southern range extension in Florida.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Conference Field Trip Follow-up: Camp Lonesome Conservation Area



Camp Lonesome Field Trip Follow up 
Submitted by Jenny Welch, Sparkleberry Chapter

If you were swayed to go on the Camp Lonesome Field Trip by Jenny's pre-conference blog, then you were one of the lucky ones. Here Jenny provides a follow up on the plants and animals observed at this very special place: 

On our way to Camp Lonesome there were two crested caracaras beside the road, and we saw turkeys with cute babies. Beautiful bright yellow meadowlarks were singing melodiously, as if to welcome us as we drove up to the gate.  A loggerhead shrike was catching breakfast in the field as we gathered to begin our hike, and blue gray gnatcatchers, northern parulas, and cardinals were calling from the trees as we started to walk.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Wednesday's Wildflower Whitemouth Dayflower

Commelina erecta
submitted by Beryn Harty, Miami Dade Chapter

Commelina erecta, photo by Beryn Harty, Roadside, Ramrod Key, FL

Whitemouth Dayflower, Commelina erecta,  is a prostrate, herbaceous, perennial wildflower with very showy morning blooms which may bloom throughout the year. The flower is  quarter sized, bright blue, with two larger ear-shaped petals and a small white lower petal (the mouth).

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Wednesday's Wildflower: Fewflower Milkweed

Asclepias lanceolata
submitted by Lynn Sweetay, Palm Beach Chapter


A. lanceolata is tall with a herbaceous stem that does not branch. Leaves are very narrow and lanceolate. Flowers are orange to red and yellow. Flowering occurs in early summer. It is a larval host plant for monarch and queen butterflies and a possible larval host for soldier butterflies as well as providing nectar for monarch and other butterflies and insects.