Thistles, plums and limestone

Cirsium undulatum

I recently visited a nearby “nature center.” It’s no substitute for the botanical garden in Wichita, but it’s not a waste of time, either. Its focus is on plants native to Kansas, and there are a number of trails there that I will explore on future visits.

I did find some color there, and a plum.

Lobelia siphilitica
Cassia fasciculata, or Chamaecrista fasciculata. Or Cassia chamaecrista.

Liatris aspera
Liatris aspera, close-up
Sand hill plum, Prunus angustifolia
Gulf fritillary
Ambrosia trifida

There was also a fine stand of everyone’s favorite, giant ragweed. (Legend has it that some hippies once journeyed out into the countryside to harvest the cannabis that allegedly grew wild in parts of Kansas and filled several large plastic bags full. Cops caught them, but they had to let the hippies go; what the hippies thought was marijuana was actually ragweed.)

Post rock

Near the parking lot there was a limestone post rock, probably imported from a county north-west of here.

Typically exciting Kansas scenery

There are more pictures here.

Some botanical links:

Potting mixtures for cacti and other succulents. (What I primarily use myself is a variant of “mabel mix,” substituting crushed-granite chicken grit for the “sharp sand” that’s universally recommended and impossible to find.)

Since Botany Photo of the Day is no longer being updated, you might want to check out Plant of the Week, devoted to plants in the USA.

If you are cocksure of your botanical knowledge and want a challenge, try this identification quiz. I knew a handful, but only a handful. The answers to the quiz are here.

A brief history of botanical illustration. (Via The Remodern Review.)