When walking around the natural untouched areas of our farm I’m always amazed at how many different types of wild flowers are growing. An area of hot, dry summers with nutrient poor sandy soil, there is still an assortment of lovely native wildflowers through each of the seasons. Identifying wild flowers that grow on our property has become a bit of a hobby for us. Some of the wild flowers that grace our land in the fall are found below.
Rosa acicularis or wild rose is a small shrub that tolerates our sandy soil. Wild roses have so many uses, petals can be used to make potpourri or rosewater and the hips are rich in Vitamin C and can be used with other fruit to make jam or jelly. Sweetly scented single pink blooms cover these bushes in early summer.
Verbascum thapsus is common Mullein. Grows in open, dry areas and is a biennial, setting a large rosette of gray-green fuzzy leaves the first year and then sending up a tall thick stem to 7 feet with a flower spike covered in showy yellow flowers the second year. A very determined plant as seeds can remain dormant in the ground for over 20 years.
Solidago nemoralis or dwarf Goldenrod loves dry hillsides and slopes and blooms from June through to late fall. Sprays of bright yellow blooms are often bent over giving solidago a graceful appearance. This is one of the shortest species of goldenrod growing from 4 inches to 2 feet. Solidago is deer tolerant, drought tolerant and attracts butterflies to your garden.
Arctostaphylos-uva-ursi is called Kinnikinnick and is a native ground-cover plant. It is very attractive with bright green, leathery evergreen leaves and red fall berries. In colder areas the leaves turn a lovely bronze-green shade and the winter berries are feed for birds and bears. This is one plant that you should never fertilize.
Sedum spathulifolium is broad leaved Stonecrop. This wildflowers also makes an outstanding garden plant. This is a succulent which produces mats of basal rosettes. The flower is a short stalk made up of many small flowers with yellow petals. You can use it in containers, as a ground cover or in rockeries. Extremely drought tolerant and deer resistant.