Monday, June 15, 2009

Butterfly weed

This is butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa). The above picture is at White River State Park, Indianapolis, June 13, 2009. The picture below is at Lafayette on the trail between South 9th St. and Beck Lane, June 14, 2009.

Butterfly weed is native to Indiana, but these plants in the photos are there because someone decided to put them there. At White River, the original flora has been radically altered by the moving of earth and the building of levees and other urban activity over the last couple hundred years. Someone decided this would be a nice place to see butterfly weed, so some seed was scattered here and the plants successfully grew. At the trail in Lafayette, growing with the butterfly weed are other plants that inhabit Indiana prairies, but these were put there by some official decision to create a new flora there. There are dandelions there, and they are true wildflowers, and this butterfly weed is not a wildflower. The water willow pictured in the previous post is a true wildflower, nobody put it there, it got there to its right habitat on its own.

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