Botany Along the "Prairie Grass Trail "

Cedarville to London (Ohio)

John E. Silvius, Professor of Biology

Grasses White Flowers Red or Violet Flowers Yellow or Orange Flowers
Big Bluestem1 Bastard-Toadflax6 Obedient Plant11 Butterfly Weed16  
Little Bluestem2 Culver's Root7 Purple Coneflower12  Gray-Headed Coneflower17 
Indian Grass3  Indian Plantain8 Royal Catchfly13 Hairy Wingstem18
Prairie Cordgrass4 Starry Campion9 Wild Bergamot14 Prairie Dock19  
Switchgrass5 Virginia Mtn.-Mint10 Queen of the Prairie 15  Whorled Rosenweed20 

The above photo of Purple Coneflower, Echinacea purpurea, like some of the photos shown below feature plant species of the remant prairie community along which cyclists, pedestrians, and adjacent highway motorists currently enjoy or will soon enjoy when the bikeway is extended from South Charleston east to London, Ohio.  As you travel the bikeway, please observe and photograph the wildflowers but do not pick or otherwise harm these historic treasures of presettlement Ohio which survive only in these narrow confines that have not been plowed or paved.

1Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii) -- a chief grass of tallgrass prairie, as seen at "County Line" remnant prairie
        looking West along U.S. 42 near Greene-Clark Co. Line.
        Big Bluestem -- here in an experimental zone, it is protected from summer mowing in cooperation with the
        Ohio Dept. of Transportation
        Big Bluestem flower spikes -- this species is sometimes called "turkey foot" because of the resemblance
        of these floral spikes to a turkey's foot
        Big Bluestem -- Along the "Prairie Grass Trail " many friends such as Richard Ware (formerly of Vermont)
        and Harold Kendall, Sr. (formerly of South Dakota, now in glory) will meet and enjoy this slice of remnant prairie in Ohio.
2Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) as seen in "Little Bluestem" remnant prairie west of South Charleston, Ohio.
3Indian Grass (Sorghastrum nutans) -- a beautiful stand in "Selma Prairie" remnant between U.S. 42 and "Prairie Grass Trail"
        Indian Grass -- as seen in "Selma Prairie" in late August and in September as bikeway nears completion
4Prairie Cordgrass (Spartina pectinata) favored in low damp soils as shown here between U.S. 42 and bikeway.
5Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) has a somewhat delicate, open-branched inflorescence.
6Bastard-Toadflax (Comandra umbellata) grows from horizontal underground rhizomes that, in partnership with a fungus,
        can form haustoria that attach to host plants and enable the toadflax to absorb nutrients.
7Culver's Root (Veronicastrum virginicum) has prominent, terminal spikes of tiny white flowers and grows in dry, upland woods and prairies.
8Indian Plantain (Cacalia atroplicifolium) seen also in a typical habitat.
9Starry Campion (Silene stellata).
10Virginia Mountain-Mint (Pycnanthimum virginianum) as seen growing with Compass Plant (large leaves).
11Obedient Plant (Physostegia virginiana)
12Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)
13Royal Catchfly (Silene regia) is an attractive, red-flowering species whose sticky exudates discourage
     insects that choose to land on the plant; instead, the red flowers attract hummingbirds which hover.
14Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa) a fragrant member of the mint family.
15Queen of the Prairie (Filipendula rubra) of the rose family; photo taken near Selma, OH.
16Butterfly-weed (Asclepias tuberosa) provides a good nectar source for Monarch Butterfly and others.
17Gray-Headed Coneflower (Ratibida pinnata) is one of the more common coneflowers in bikeway remnants.
18Hairy Wingstem (Verbesina helianthoides) and as seen also in a typical habitat
19Prairie Dock (Silphium terebinthinaceum, Pinnatifid Variety) seen also in a typical habitat
20Whorled Rosenweed (Silphium trifoliatum) -- with U.S. 42 and Selma Rd. crossing in background

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