Because I spend much time out in nature, it has become somewhat unusual for me to come across a wildflower that I have never seen before. If I do, it is usually a very inconspicuous plant hidden among more noticeable species.
Today was an exception.
I came across a gorgeous, 6 foot high plant covered with purple blossoms.
A glance at a field guide tells me that is New York Ironweed.
We are at the northern limit for ironweed which is found in moist meadows.
The leaves are lance-shaped and finely toothed.
Ironweed received its common name from its ironlike qualities: tough stems, tenacious growing habit, and flowers that give way to seed clusters the color of rust.
Some botany by the East Don:
Views from near the East Don River north of Finch Ave.
High noon in August! over all the land
The very air is palpitant with heat;
While stretching far, the fields of ripening wheat
Unrippled lie as plains of yellow sand! – Henry Sylvester Cornwell (1831–86)
Such beautiful, wonderful summer sights. Thank you so much, Miles!
I am so thrilled to be learning the names of the plants. Thank you for posting everyday…I sure hope you don’t get tired!!!!!!
I still get mixed up at times…but it takes time to train your eye to spot ‘that little’ difference ….much like when first birding when every bird was just ‘ a little brown job’..
For years I’ve admired a beautiful Ironweed plant at Brick Works Park, next to the path skirting the far (i.e. north) side of the first pond (i.e. the pond closest to industrial pad). I look for it in late summer when it finally blooms. Its colour is super-saturated. I always knew it as just Ironweed so I’m intrigued to learn there are different types such as New York. I’m guessing Brick Works’ incumbent is Giant Ironweed, listed in the nanps.org and can-plant.ca plant databases along with Missouri Ironweed and “Fasicled” (?!) Ironweed which is native to Manitoba. Anyway it’s a beaut.