Sunday, August 18, 2013

Beautiful and quirky ... but noxious!

Daucus carota aka wild carrot aka Queen Anne's Lace aka bird's nest is a naturalized plant brought with settlers from Europe and southwest Asia. Here is why it's called "bird's nest."

The flower is seen from the edge here; the better picture is of the flower after it's done and it curls up to allow the seeds inside to ripen.

Bring it into your home or property only with the greatest caution. Throw the used flowers into the trash, not your compost.

This plant is known to be a companion plant to tomatoes IN EUROPE and SOUTHWEST ASIA, where it attracts native wasps. It does not do this in North America.

It is classified by the USDA as a noxious weed.

Now, I like it. It's super cute! But I'm very very careful with it. 

If you're curious, the flower spike to the far left, up high, is Russian sage. The furry spike on the far right is Blue vervain with the blossoms near the tip. Below the Queen Anne's lace is flowering spurge, which is going great guns in the ditches right now.

I think of flowering spurge as one of the "bright-white" flowers. Some plants bloom creamy-white, like elderberries; some greenish-white, and others are a bit like spotlights, thus "bright-white" like this spurge.

As you look around at the plants blooming, you'll see things to help you distinguish colors, shapes, heights, etc.

Good hunting!

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