Florida tickseed (Coreopsis floridana) is one of 12 Coreopsis species native to Florida. It is endemic to the state and occurs naturally in wet pinelands and prairies, cypress swamp edges and roadside ditches. It typically blooms from late summer into early winter, but may bloom year-round. Its bright sunny flowers attract a variety of pollinators, especially butterflies.
Join us for our next free webinar at 2 p.m. Oct. 13 as we learn about pollinator research in the Volusia Sandhill Ecosystem, a 0.5-hectare urban habitat fragment at the Gillespie Museum, Stetson University, DeLand.
Eastern purple bladderwort (Utricularia purpurea) is an aquatic carnivorous plant found in wetlands, freshwater swamps and shallow ponds and lakes throughout Florida. Its small but showy lavender flowers bloom year-round. This highly specialized plant feeds on insects and other small organisms caught in its bladder-like trap. Unsuspecting prey brush against tiny hairs that trigger a trapdoor. As the door closes, the organism and water are sucked into the bladder. With the bladder full and the door closed, the plant releases enzymes to digest the organism.
White peacock butterflies, found in the brush-footed family, fly in Florida throughout the year. They are small white butterflies with brown markings and orange margins. The common name of the White peacock comes from black spots on the forewings and hindwings, giving the appearance of a peacock’s eyespot. You might notice these lovely winged friends flying close to the ground searching for Turkey-tangle frogfruit, which acts as both a host and nectar plant for them.
The Panhandle Wildflower Alliance’s Fall 2020 newsletter features updates about new wildflower programs, where to see wildflowers in bloom, and much more.
Hartwrightia (Hartwrightia floridana) is an uncommon inconspicuous wildflower found in only 10 Florida and five Georgia counties. It is a state-listed threatened species in both states, where habitat loss and fire suppression imperil it. The plant occurs in seepage slopes, depressions, marsh edges and wet pine flatwoods and prairies. Its pastel flowers bloom in late summer and fall. Pollination has not been studied specifically in Hartwrightia, but it is presumed its flowers are pollinated by the same variety of insects that pollinate other Asteraceae species.
Late summer rains across most of Florida were enough to promote showy displays of native wildflowers and grasses this fall. Above-normal temperatures and normal rain are forecast for fall, which may result in earlier flowering of some native wildflowers and grasses.
Bird pepper (Capsicum annuum var. glabriusculum) is a lovely native plant found primarily in coastal hammocks in South and Central Florida. The plant’s dainty flowers bloom year-round and attract mostly bees. As its name suggests, birds (especially mockingbirds) love its fruit, particularly before they ripen. The fruit is edible to humans, but be warned — it is hot!
Almost 300 native milkweed and nectar-providing plants were installed along a highway retention basin on Alt. U.S. Highway 27 near Chiefland Tuesday. The effort is part of a Florida Museum of Natural History pilot project to increase roadside habitat for Monarch butterflies. It is funded in part by the Florida Wildflower Foundation.
Originally broadcast live on Sept. 15, this webinar features Liz Sparks and Suzanne Spencer who share tips and insights on how to work with your county and organize volunteers to help save roadside wildflowers.
Also known as Wild cinnamon, Cinnamon bark (Canella winterana) is an evergreen flowering shrub or small tree found in coastal hammocks in Florida’s extreme southern counties. Although common in the Keys, it is a state-listed endangered species. The plant blooms year-round, peaking in spring and summer and attracting butterflies, especially Schaus’ swallowtail. Birds and other wildlife eat its fruit and find cover in its foliage.
The 2020 Seedlings for Schools garden grants have been postponed to give teachers time to adjust to the “new normal” of teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic.
With its diminutive stature and greenish-yellow flowers, Savannah milkweed (Asclepias pedicellata) is oft overlooked in its native pineland and prairie habitats. It blooms late spring through fall, peaking in summer. Its flowers are attractive to bees, wasps and butterflies. Like all members of the Asclepias genus, Savannah milkweed is a larval host plant for Monarch, Queen and Soldier butterflies. The plant contains a milky latex that is toxic to most animals, but Monarch, Queen and Soldier caterpillars are adapted to feed on them despite the chemical defense.
Get to know Florida Wildflower Foundation member Jeff Weber. Jeff is dedicated to protecting and restoring Florida’s natural ecology in his career and in his free time. As an environmental specialist with Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources, Jeff manages natural areas of the county. As a member of Florida Wildflower Foundation, he regularly attends field trips and events to connect with others who share a passion for wild Florida. As a homeowner, Jeff does his part to plant as much native vegetation as he can!
Beach peanut (Okenia hypogaea) is a creeping, vine-like plant that occurs naturally in coastal strands and on beach dunes where it is a pioneer species. It blooms spring through fall, peaking in summer. Although not endemic, it occurs in only four counties in South Florida and is a state-listed endangered species. Despite its common name, it is not related to the common peanut (Arachis hypogaea), which is a member of the Fabaceae (Legume) family.