Native Wildflowers

Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort) and Phlox divaricata (Eastern Blue Phlox)

Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort) and Phlox divaricata (Eastern Blue Phlox)

Sunday we visited the North Carolina Botanical Garden (NCBG) to check one of my favorite plantings, a wildflower display of Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort) and Phlox divaricata (Eastern Blue Phlox).

Their flower show is just getting underway.

Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort)

Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort)

Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort)

Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort)

Phlox divaricata (Eastern Blue Phlox)

Phlox divaricata (Eastern Blue Phlox)

Both Packera aurea (Golden Ragwort) and Phlox divaricata (Eastern Blue Phlox) are eastern North American natives that look lovely blooming together.

Golden Ragwort and Eastern Blue Phlox are eastern North American natives.

Golden Ragwort and Eastern Blue Phlox are eastern North American natives.

 

The Botanical Garden has many other flowers blooming now also, including Mertensia virginica (Virginia bluebells), native to eastern North America. Here are several Virginia bluebells tucked in among the phlox and golden ragwort.

Mertensia virginica (Virginia bluebells) are blooming too.

At right, Mertensia virginica (Virginia bluebells) blooming among the phlox and golden ragwort.

Polemonium reptans (Spreading Jacob’s Ladder) is native to eastern United States. I have not been able to establish these in my garden despite three attempts, but plan to try again.

Polemonium reptans (Spreading Jacob's Ladder)

Polemonium reptans (Spreading Jacob’s Ladder)

In the woodland gardens I was delighted to find this Hepatica acutiloba (Sharp-lobe Liverleaf). A member of the Buttercup family – ranunculaceae – it is native to eastern North America.

Hepatica acutiloba Sharp-lobe Liverleaf)

Hepatica acutiloba (Sharp-lobe Liverleaf)

We saw quite a lot of trillium of various kinds. I did not see a sign identifying the yellow one.

Trillium

Trillium

Great White Trillium is native to eastern North America.

Trillium grandiflorum (Great White Trillium)

Trillium grandiflorum (Great White Trillium)

Trillium cuneatum (Little Sweet Betsy) is native to southeastern United States.

Trillium cuneatum (Little sweet Betsy)

Trillium cuneatum (Little Sweet Betsy)

There are two more natives that caught my eye Sunday. The first one, Aesculus pavia (Red Buckeye), is an attention grabber at this time of year with its long panicles of coral-red-orange tubular flowers. We saw quite a few of these, growing as shrubs and as trees. They are native to the southern and eastern parts of the United States.

Aesculus pavia (Red Buckeye)

Aesculus pavia (Red Buckeye)

Red buckeye is native to the southern and eastern parts of the United States

Red buckeye is native to the southern and eastern parts of the United States

Trillium stamineum (Twisted Trillium) is native to three U.S. states: Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi.

Trillium stamineum (Twisted Trillium)

Trillium stamineum (Twisted Trillium)

Native to southeastern United States is this Fothergilla major (Witch-hazel family – Hamamelidaceae). I like its white and yellowish-green coloration, a fresh spring-like combination.  It seems to be doing a happy dance.

Fothergilla major (Witch-hazel family - Hamamelidaceae

Fothergilla major (Witch-hazel family – Hamamelidaceae)

Fothergilla major (Witch-hazel family - Hamamelidaceae

Fothergilla major (Witch-hazel family – Hamamelidaceae)

There were many native ferns emerging and a beautiful but camera shy Halesia carolina (Carolina Silverbell). Mayapples are just beginning to bloom another visitor told us, but we did not see them. We saw many Mayapples though and will have to return to this garden soon.

Podophyllum peltatum (Mayapple) is native to eastern North America.

Podophyllum peltatum (Mayapple) is native to eastern North America.

24 thoughts on “Native Wildflowers

  1. P&B

    I love the Eastern Blue Phlox, not just its color but its scent. I wonder how the Botanical garden keeps rabbits and deer from leveling them to the ground.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Haven’t noticed a scent on the phlox but will seek it out. I’ve tried to establish this in my garden but not successfully. NCBG installed a huge deer fence around the grounds a few years ago to protect the display gardens. Not sure about the rabbits.

      Reply
  2. sweetbay103

    I’m glad you posted this, we may go to Chapel Hill tomorrow. It’s great to get such a beautiful preview! The twisted trillium is new to me. I love your pictures of the fothergilla.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Hi Sweetbay, that fothergilla was really gorgeous the other day. I have a meeting at NCBG this afternoon so I’ll be checking out the progress of a few of these. Maybe we’ll run into each other one of these days.

      Reply
  3. Chloris

    Thank you for this post, I really enjoyed it. I am passionate about wild flowers and it is fascinating to see the wild flowers of other counties. Yours are all treasured garden plants here, apart from the golden ragwort. That would never catch on here as a garden plant because we have the invasive Oxford ragwort: Senecio squalidus. This escaped from The Oxford Botanical Gardens and has become a noxious weed all over the countryside. It is poisonous to livestock. Do you know the Latin name for the golden ragwort, I am curious to know which one it is?

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Chloris, glad you enjoyed these flowers too. Except for the phlox I never knew about them until lately, even though they’re native here, and I am enjoying learning about them. The golden ragwort is Packera aurea (formerly Senecio aureus).

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Marian, I thought of you when I saw the trilliums the other day, remembering your rescue. There is something captivating and exciting about seeing the ephemerals.

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      So happy you enjoyed it Stepheny. It’s only been the last two or three years that I’ve known about the trilliums, but better late than never. Tour meeting this afternoon!

      Reply
  4. Julie

    Thank you for sharing this really lovely post, I have tried to grow your Eastern Blue Phlox here on my sandy soil, but it was short-lived, there was a scent though. Its interesting that a lot of your native wildflowers are grown here as cultivated plants. There is so much to learn!

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Glad you enjoyed it Julie. I’ve been slow to appreciate the loveliness and importance of our native plants, but am enjoying learning about them.

      Reply
  5. garden98110

    Thanks for including us on this walk. It is evident how much you treasure these wildflowers. We are fans of the Trillium Genus. Thinking the unidentified is Trillium luteum (Muhlenberg) Harbison found in your neck of the woods. Identified from “Trillium Genus” by Samejima

    Reply
  6. Pauline

    I love wild flowers and have quite a few here, we have lots of your wild flowers over here as garden plants, I especially love the blue phlox. Ragwort over here is fatal to livestock so it is eradicated whenever it pops up, a shame because it is host to some very beautiful moths. Thank you for taking us on your walk with you.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Glad you enjoyed the wild flowers Pauline. Seeing your woodland plants is always such a treat for me. Too bad about the Ragwort affecting livestock–I will look out for moths next time I visit that area of this garden.

      Reply
  7. bittster

    What a nice collection, and great pictures. It’s a good reminder of just how many wildflowers we have available, all the ones that used to dot the woodlands before deer and development…. and that they can be brought back!

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      I’m enjoying learning about the native flowers. Though I’ve lived in NC all my life I didn’t know most of these when I was growing up.

      Reply
  8. gardeninacity

    I grow the Phlox divaritica and enjoy the flowers, though the rabbits enjoy the leaves a little too much. Have never seen the golden ragwort. Trilliums are wonderful of course, I do have some T. cuneatum.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      I’ve noticed rabbits getting too friendly with my Phlox divaricata also, but unlike the garden phlox at least the deer don’t bother it. I’m just learning about these other wildflowers.

      Reply

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