Friday Focus on Fruit: Florida Native Plant WILD LIME; LIME PRICKLYASH (Zanthoxylum fagara)

Pretty aromatic tree. Watch the thorns! Provides cover for fauna, fruits eaten by wildlife.

Larval host: Giant Swallowtail (Papilio cresphontes) and Schaus’ Swallowtail (Heraclides aristodemus) (in range)

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/zanthoxylum-fagara

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Zanthoxylum+fagara

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2804

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: VIRGINIA CREEPER; WOODBINE (Parthenocissus quinquefolia)

Deciduous vine in the grape family provides spectacular fall color. can be grown on masonary surfaces without damage but use caution if planted near painted surfaces.

Can be grown as a ground cover but will always attempt to climb anything nearby. Freely self seeds so can be aggressive, but provides great cover and food value for wildlife especially insects and birds.

Berries From September 2016:

Larval Host: Moths including several Sphinx moths.

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/parthenocissus-quinquefolia

I’ve had Brown Thrashers successfully nest in my vine.

thrasherNestCreeperJuly2016

thrasher nest well hidden (July 2016)

thrasherinNestCreeperJuly2016

Closer look shows the Brown Thrasher in the nest built in Viriginia Creeper

Learn more wildlife value: http://plants.usda.gov/factsheet/pdf/fs_paqu2.pdf

Sap may cause allergic reaction to some.

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=parthenocissus+quinquefolia

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3742

From 2015: virginiacreepermay2015a

buds

buds

virginiacreeperMay2015B ###

Friday Focus on Fruit: Florida Native Plant : AMERICAN SYCAMORE; AMERICAN PLANETREE (Platanus occidentalis)

Likes it wet. Loses its leaves in winter. https://whatfloridanativeplantisbloomingtoday.wordpress.com/2013/03/17/american-sycamore-american-planetree-platanus-occidentalis/

Learn: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/st484

My take:  http://web.archive.org/web/20110923211558/http://www.beautifulwildlifegarden.com/neglected-tree-research.html

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?:  SWAMP BAY (Persea palustris)

Aromatic leaves.  Larval host: Palamedes Swallowtail Butterfly (Papilio palamedes), Spicebush Swallowtail (P. troilus) and Schaus Swallowtail (P. aristodemus) also host to Redbay Psyllid (Trioza magnoliae) which is what those lumpy galls are on the leaves.

Prone to Laurel Wilt Disease which is causing dieoff of this beautiful species.

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/persea-palustris

Where does it grow in Florida?:  http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2064

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=persea+palustris

My take:  https://floridawildlifegardentails.wordpress.com/2017/03/24/will-the-palamedes-swallowtail-butterfly-survive/

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Friday Focus on Fruit: Florida Native Plant BLACKBERRY (Rubus spp.)

More info, photos:

https://whatfloridanativeplantisbloomingtoday.wordpress.com/2017/02/22/sawtooth-blackberry-pennsylvania-blackberry/

https://whatfloridanativeplantisbloomingtoday.wordpress.com/2015/01/28/sawtooth-blackberry-pennsylvania-blackberry-rubus-pensilvanicus/

https://whatfloridanativeplantisbloomingtoday.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/blackberry-rubus-spp/

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: PICKERELWEED (Pontederia cordata)

Emergent plant for shallow water.

Learn: http://regionalconservation.org/beta/nfyn/plantdetail.asp?tx=Pontcord

Learn more: http://aquaplant.tamu.edu/plant-identification/alphabetical-index/pickerelweed/

“The seed of pickerelweed is eaten by waterfowl. Geese and muskrats will consume the vegetation, while only fish, and to a lesser extent birds and small mammals, utilize flooded foliage for cover.” (source: https://plants.usda.gov/factsheet/pdf/fs_poco14.pdf)

Also provides nectar/pollen for Butterflies, Bees and other Pollinators

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Pontederia+cordata

Said to be edible: http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?latinname=Pontederia+cordata

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3688

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: PILLPOD SANDMAT (Euphorbia hirta)

One of the spurges it is said to have multiple medicinal purposes: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3249903/

Larval host for Salt Marsh Moth (Estigmene acrea) [personal observation]

This groundcover can be aggressive in disturbed areas.

Learn: http://regionalconservation.org/ircs/database/plants/PlantPage.asp?TXCODE=Euphhirt

“Formerly included in the genus Chamaesyce, this species is reclassified under Euphorbia subg. Chamaesyce sect. Anisophyllum subsect. Hypericifoliae.”

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=710

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: ALLIGATORFLAG; FIREFLAG (Thalia geniculata)

Wetlands plant. Tall, large leaves.

Learn: http://plants.ifas.ufl.edu/plant-directory/thalia-geniculata/

Larval host:  Brazilian Skipper (Calpodes ethlius)  http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/thalia-geniculata

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Thalia+geniculata

Learn more: http://benkolstad.net/?p=5614

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3590

From June 2010:

Thalia geniculata

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: ROSY CAMPHORWEED (Pluchea baccharis)

Fragrant plant for moist to wet locations. Loved by butterflies and other pollinators such as the sweat bees shown here.

synonym: P. rosea

Learn: http://regionalconservation.org/beta/nfyn/plantdetail.asp?tx=Plucbacc

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Pluchea+baccharis

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2500

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: CUBAN JUTE; INDIAN HEMP (Sida rhombifolia)

May be used in making cord and said to have some use in herbal medicines/teas. may contain Ephedrine.

Can be aggressive with abundant seeds. Supports wildlife: shown is a small carpenter bee (Ceratina sp.).

Learn: http://regionalconservation.org/ircs/database/plants/PlantPage.asp?TXCODE=Sidarhom

Larval host: Mallow Scrub-Hairstreak (Strymon istapa), Checkered-Skippers (Pyrgus spp.),

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=sida

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2741

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: BLACKEYED SUSAN (Rudbeckia hirta)

Blooms all year in warm areas. Freely self seeds. Bright flowers that are usually 2 ft. but can reach 3 ft in certain conditions.

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/rudbeckia-hirta

Loved by pollinators and spiders. Birds enjoy the seeds.

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Rudbeckia+hirta

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2286

My take: http://floridawildlifegardentails.wordpress.com/2017/03/06/five-minutes-with-susan-in-the-garden/

Seeds available: http://www.floridawildflowers.com/products/Rudbeckia-hirta-%252d-Blackeyed%C2%A0Susan.html

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: LEAFLESS BEAKED ORCHID (Sacoila lanceolata)

a.k.a. LEAFLESS BEAKED LADIESTRESSES

I nearly always *almost* mow this surprise visitor over since it first appeared in 2015.  Luckily the red caught my eye just in the nick of time.

State threatened.

“The plant is deciduous. The leaves are not present at the time of bloom. They appear after flowering and persist from summer to early winter.”

Learn: http://lee.ifas.ufl.edu/Hort/GardenPubsAZ/Scarlet_Ladies%27_Tresses.pdf

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2298

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: VIRGINIA CREEPER; WOODBINE (Parthenocissus quinquefolia)

Deciduous vine in the grape family provides spectacular fall color. can be grown on masonary surfaces without damage but use caution if planted near painted surfaces.

Can be grown as a ground cover but will always attempt to climb anything nearby. Freely self seeds so can be aggressive, but provides great cover and food value for wildlife especially insects and birds.

 

Berries From September 2016:

Larval Host: Moths including several Sphinx moths.

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/parthenocissus-quinquefolia

I’ve had Brown Thrashers successfully nest in my vine.

Learn more wildlife value: http://plants.usda.gov/factsheet/pdf/fs_paqu2.pdf

Sap may cause allergic reaction to some.

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=parthenocissus+quinquefolia

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3742

From 2015: virginiacreepermay2015a

buds

buds

virginiacreeperMay2015B ###

WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: WILD COFFEE (Psychotria nervosa)

Mason Wasp (Pseudodynerus quadrisectus)  enjoys nectar from wild coffee

Beautiful shrub which attracts pollinators and birds with the resulting red fruits.  Said to be a Larval host for the Coffee-loving Pyrausta Moth (Pyrausta tyralis) but I have yet to find any caterpillars although I have scads of adults flying around.

Learn: http://fnps.org/plants/plant/psychotria-nervosa

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2811

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: CHICKASAW PLUM (Prunus angustifolia)

Myzinum carolinianum, a Thynnid Wasp visits

 

tree/shrub. Flowers great for pollinators, fruits feed birds/mammals. This is one I added to my landscape.

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/prunus-angustifolia

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Prunus+angustifolia

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3855

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: WINGED LOOSESTRIFE (Lythrum alatum var. lanceolatum)

Likes it moist/wet. Loved by bees and other pollinators; hummingbirds. As can be seen in the photo below, Gray Hairstreak butterflies also find it enticing.

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/lythrum-alatum-var-lanceolatum

Larval host: Psyche casta (bagworm moth)

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Lythrum+alatum

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3282

My take: http://floridawildlifegardentails.wordpress.com/2016/08/03/winging-it-for-pollinators/

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: WILD LIME; LIME PRICKLYASH (Zanthoxylum fagara)

Pretty aromatic tree. Watch the thorns! Provides cover for fauna, fruits eaten by wildlife.

Larval host: Giant Swallowtail (Papilio cresphontes) and Schaus’ Swallowtail (Heraclides aristodemus) (in range)

Learn: http://www.fnps.org/plants/plant/zanthoxylum-fagara

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Zanthoxylum+fagara

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=2804

The honeybees were visiting this plant en masse this week.

exotic honeybees were feasting at this beautiful native

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WHAT FLORIDA NATIVE PLANT IS BLOOMING TODAY?: RABBITBELLS (Crotalaria rotundifolia)

Also known as rattlebox. Low growing member of the pea family; may be toxic to cattle.

Larval Host: Bella Moth (Utetheisa ornatrix); ceraunus blue butterfly (Hemiargus ceraunus)

Learn: http://regionalconservation.org/beta/nfyn/plantdetail.asp?tx=Crotrotu

Fact sheet explaining Native vs. Non-native of this genus: http://bugwoodcloud.org/CDN/floridainvasives/CrotalariaSpecies-rattlebox.pdf

Native American Ethnobotany for this genus: http://naeb.brit.org/uses/search/?string=Crotalaria+rotundifolia

Where does it grow in Florida? http://www.florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/Plant.aspx?id=3328

My take: https://floridawildlifegardentails.wordpress.com/2017/04/29/we-dont-all-eat-leaves-you-know/

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