Monday, September 14, 2009

Fall Wildflowers in Surprising Places

There’s no time of year in Florida when something isn’t blooming but it seems that Mother Nature saves the best for last. Fall brings an explosion of wildflowers so if you’re a flower lover this is a great time to visit! Blooming in the pinelands are vanilla plant, deer tongue, several varieties of goldenrod, tiny elephant’s foot and the incomparable pine lily. The scrub is awash in blazing star, palafox, wireweed, red basil and goldenaster. In swamps and wet areas you might see climbing aster, string-lily and water lilies.

Look for wildflowers in parks and other public lands. Species and bloom times differ so it’s check in with staff about what's blooming at places you plan to visit. En route, check out waysides and ditches along country roads.

State parks and county parks offer free walks sometimes with an experienced botanist. Another source of information is, which lists wildflower hikes around the state.

Florida Native Plant Society members freely share accurage information and stories. Thei meetings and field trips around the state are open to the public.

Serious botanizers will want Walter Kingsley Taylor’s book on Florida wildflowers, "Florida Wildflowers in Their Natural Communities and The Guide to Florida Wildflowers."

By Guest Blogger Fran Palmeri

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