Content tagged with "Wildflowers, Grasses and Other Nonwoody Plants"

Photo of a celestial lily, or prairie pleatleaf iris, in bloom.

Celestial Lily (Prairie Iris; Prairie Pleatleaf; Prairie Celestial)

Nemastylis geminiflora
Celestial lily, in the iris family, blooms only in the morning. Its showy, lavender-blue flowers shine like six-pointed stars on glades and prairies in southern Missouri and the eastern Ozarks.

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Photo of chara, an alga with stemlike and leaflike structures

Chara (Muskgrass; Stonewort)

Chara spp.
These aquatic algae look like regular vascular plants. Chara has a crisp, gritty texture, a musky odor, and gray-green, needlelike structures that resemble leaves.

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Photo of a chicory plant.

Chicory (Blue Sailors)

Cichorium intybus
In summer and fall, the pretty blue flowers of chicory decorate roadsides and other disturbed areas. This weedy member of the aster family was introduced from Europe long ago. Its roots have been used as a coffee substitute.

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Photo of Chinese yam showing leaves and bulbils

Chinese Yam

Dioscorea oppositifolia (sometimes called D. batatas)
Similar to kudzu, Chinese yam is an aggressive vine that overtakes nearly everything within reach that stands still long enough! Learn more about this invasive plant—and please don’t plant it!

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Photo of clasping Venus' looking glass, a blue wildflower

Clasping Venus’ Looking Glass

Triodanis perfoliata (formerly Specularia perfoliata)
Clasping Venus' looking glass is a single-stemmed plant with purple or blue star-shaped flowers and bluntly toothed, alternate leaves that clasp the stem. It's scattered statewide in a variety of habitats and blooms May-June.

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Photo of cleavers flower cluster with developing fruits

Cleavers (Bedstraw; Goose Grass)

Galium aparine
The tiny white flowers of this native plant are not very memorable, but the curious, sticky-feeling whorls of narrow leaves and lightweight, 4-sided stems make cleavers unique. And then there’s the tiny, round, “Velcro” covered balls of the seeds, which “stick tight” to your socks!

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Photo of climbing false buckwheat vines, leaves, and flowers.

Climbing False Buckwheat (Crested Buckwheat)

Fallopia scandens (formerly Polygonum scandens)
Climbing false buckwheat is a rampant annual or perennial climber that often forms curtainlike masses of twining red stems, covering shrubs and trees. Look for it in moist, open or shaded bottomlands, alluvial valleys, and floodplains.

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Photo of climbing milkweed flowers and leaves.

Climbing Milkweed

Matelea decipiens
The brown, starlike, spreading flowers of climbing milkweed differ from those of other milkweeds, but milky sap, warty pods with silk-tasseled seeds, and the structures in the center of the flowers show its true alliance.

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Photo of closed gentian flowers

Closed Gentian (Bottle Gentian)

Gentiana andrewsii
Closed gentian, a wildflower of moist prairies, never opens—it stays closed and budlike throughout the pollination process. How is it pollinated? Bumblebees push their way into the flowers!

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Photo of columbine flower closeup


Aquilegia canadensis
Native to much of eastern North America, this columbine's range almost matches the breeding territory of the ruby-throated hummingbird, its number-one pollinator. Fancy that!

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