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Wild Beauties

June 26th, 2014

We have power lines that go through the front of our property. The company is down there working every now and then, most recently they put in new power lines. They made a bit of a mess down and really tear up the natural flora. As I drove by the other day I spotted color out of the corner of my eye and stopped to check it out on my way home. This is what I found:
Sheep Laurel 2
When I got home I looked up in my copy of Native Plants for Your Maine Garden and I identified it as Sheep Laurel.  What a beautiful and interesting plant, I’m so glad I stopped and identified it. I’m so glad I purchased this book!
Sheep Laurel 1
You’re not supposed to dig up wild flowers, but I’m debating rescuing this one. Since it’s on the power lines it will be sprayed with herbicide or be driven over by the atvs and trucks that like to ride up and down the lines.  If anything I’ll try to gather a few seeds when I see them to try to get them going up here on the hill.

Do you have a local plant identification book for your area?

10 Comments to “Wild Beauties”
  1. Jennifer Fisk on June 26, 2014 at 6:03 am

    I don’t think the rule against transplanting is for all wild flowers, just specific ones. I would go ahead and move the sheep laurel at the appropriate time or perhaps sooner before it gets trampled. My guess would be you’d be successful if you take a big enough section of its present spot.

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  2. Robin on June 26, 2014 at 6:51 am

    There aren’t many plants that are protected. I’d dig it up!

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  3. ann roberts on June 26, 2014 at 6:56 am

    I do own several wildflower ID books and use them often. Since we have meat rabbits and I feed them very naturally, I need to know what the local weeds are, if I can feed them to rabbits and what their life cycle is. I also am just flat out in love with wild flowers so it is nice to be able to know them by name instead of just by sight. My fav is one called Moth Mullien which was unknown to me when we moved to middle Tenneessee 5 years ago

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  4. amy on June 26, 2014 at 7:36 am

    Lovely. I would dig it up as well. When my husband and I first married we had a cabin in the woods. There was a powerline that ran out back…several hundred yards away. When they went through to “clear” the lines it looked as if a giant had had a hissy fit. I would save the little plant:)

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  5. Joan on June 26, 2014 at 8:47 am

    I’d move it. I was surprised when I looked at the book Native Plants for Your Maine Garden that there are a few plants that I don’t think are native to this area – I should look up whether I’m right or not!

    My very favorite plant book for this area is The Plants of Acadia National Park. It’s great because it has most of the plants from this area as well, grouped by families (so not quite so easy for people who don’t know the families). My favorite easy plant books are the Marilyn Dwelley ones – Spring Wildflowers of New England and Summer and Fall Wildflowers of New England. These are not as comprehensive but are really easy to use – grouped by colors. A lot of people like Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide, but I’m not crazy about it. And if I get really stumped on a plant I look in Flora of Maine, which is a difficult key to use but it has absolutely everything. If you’d ever like to look at my many dozens of plant books, come on by!

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    • Joan on June 26, 2014 at 9:18 am

      I wouldn’t worry about digging up most local plants to relocate (with the exception of lady’s slippers and a few others). Then you don’t have to worry about buying something from outside the area that may spread disease, become invasive, or hybridize with our local plants!

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  6. Misti on June 26, 2014 at 9:13 am

    Since we’re biologists by trade we definitely have our fair share of local flora books! I wouldn’t worry too greatly about digging up a plant in an area that gets sprayed, just be more cautious when closer to public lands that may have laws protecting those plants.

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  7. Nebraska Dave on June 26, 2014 at 9:35 am

    Susy, you live in a strange place. I don’t think we have any laws like that in Nebraska. Of course no one here digs up wild flowers anyway, they just cause death by herbicide. Although the Nebraska road department has started planting a wildflower grass mix along the road right of ways. It almost looks like what I would have imagined the prairie would have looked like during the pioneer days.

    I do have a Nebraska native edible plant book that was given to me. Being raised on a farm, who knew all those weed plants I eradicated were actually edible. Just about every thing that grows wild in Nebraska is edible. Well, except for most of the mushrooms. Even those dang nettle weeds are edible. Almost every part of the wild Day Lilly (commonly known as ditch Lilly here) is edible. And, sheesh, the dandelion? I’ve spent most of my life trying to eliminate that weed from my lawn. Now I learn that it’s a tasty delight in the spring and people make wine from them. It’s taking awhile for my mind to get reprogramed and view those plants and anything other than weeds.

    Have a great wild beauties day.

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  8. Sarah on June 26, 2014 at 11:52 am

    Yes, I have a guide for Texas plants and it’s handy for figuring out what we can grow that won’t need water and won’t mind 110+ degrees for a couple of months.

    It’s illegal to pull wildflowers here in Texas right of ways, but if it’s your own property I don’t see how it could be wrong.

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  9. Home and Garden on June 27, 2014 at 12:58 am

    What a wild beauty! I’d dig that up too. Just be careful though. You might damage it’s roots. Just dig deep and wide. I hope everything goes well.

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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