Summer wildflowers will be at their best in South Florida, which suffered little effect from the spring drought that plagued the rest of the state. Here’s a preview of what’s in store across the state and where to look.
Do you enjoy juicy watermelons, local blueberries and strawberries and fresh Florida orange juice? How about carrots, broccoli, almonds and apples? If you do, please thank an insect, especially during National Pollinator Week, June 17-23. Learn more about our pollinators – especially native bees – and why they are so important.
When Scott Davis found a large population of the state-listed endangered Night-blooming petunia (Ruellia noctiflora) growing along US 98, he asked the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to declare it a protected wildflower area. FDOT did. When the construction of the bike trail between Crawfordville and St. Marks was slated to roll right over the plants, Scott planned a rescue operation.
Join us as we explore the Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area with local naturalists Mary Keim and Randy Snyder. We will meet in the parking lot just past the pay station. From there, we will caravan along Powerline Road and Fish Hole Road, making several stops to take in the wildflowers, butterflies, birds and beautiful scenery.
Learn how Florida’s Panhandle counties are saving roadside wildflowers, thanks to the work of the Panhandle Wildflower Alliance.
The Fall 2018 Panhandle Wildflower Alliance newsletter features news about life after Hurricane Michael, State Road 65 wildflowers, and Santa Rosa County’s wildflower program and extension garden, as well as a call for volunteers for a planting project.
Goldenrod soldier beetles (Chauliognathus pensylvanicus) are pollinators and predators of pesky garden pests. They are found throughout Florida and most of the United States. Their populations peak in late summer and early fall, perfectly timed with the bloom of goldenrod. These common beetles prefer sunny spots with rich nectar sources, such as gardens, fields and roadsides.
White twinevine (Sarcostemma clausum) is an evergreen twining vine with large clusters of fragrant flowers. It is a larval host plant for Monarch, Queen and Soldier butterflies and an important nectar source for bees and wasps. Flowers typically bloom in summer and fall, but may bloom throughout the year. The plant occurs naturally in swamps, moist hammocks, coastal strands and wetland edges.
Fewflower milkweed (Asclepias lanceolata) is a delicate perennial wildflower found in swamps and moist to wet pinelands and prairies throughout Florida. Its stunning orange to red flowers typically bloom late spring through fall.
2018 has been a great year for wildflowers, and summer looks to be no exception. Unlike last summer, when many areas were dry, rain has been frequent enough to keep wildflowers blooming in showy displays. Learn where to find the best of summer’s showy displays.
Milkweed is critical food for Monarch larva. Photo by John Flannery View as a PDF The Monarch butterfly is in peril Throughout Florida and the United States, habitat loss, the wide use of herbicides and genetically modified crops, and frequent roadside mowing have decreased milkweeds (Asclepias species), the Monarch’s host plant. As a result, the…
With interest mounting in using wildflowers in urban landscapes, there is a huge demand for information for those new to Florida’s native plants. Enter “20 Easy-to-Grow Wildflowers,” a new publication from the Florida Wildflower Foundation. The free 24-page magazine features a selection of 20 “tried and true” species that are easy to grow and maintain.
Longleaf milkweed (Aslcepias longifolia) is a deciduous perennial wildflower that occurs naturally in bogs, moist to wet flatwoods and prairies. It typically blooms in spring but may bloom well into summer or early fall. It is a larval host plant for Monarch and Queen butterflies, and an important nectar source for bees and wasps.
Many of Florida’s spring native wildflowers have large, showy flowers –– such as Iris and Purple thistle. But some common ones may be underappreciated because their flowers are small, near the ground, or just positioned on the stem where they may be hard to see. However, they are quite beautiful when viewed close up.
The Monarch butterfly’s demise has captured America’s attention. You can help by using native milkweed species in your landscape. Find out what you need to know to help save Monarchs.