For some years now, I've told myself that I was going to learn the names of the wildflowers of this area (Mercer / Rock Island / Henry counties, Illinois) once and for all- something I should have accomplished at Boy Scout age. I don't know how many times I've asked myself, or asked someone standing next to me, "What the heck is that?" -or- "Do you know what they call this?" -or something along those lines.
This video contains photos and common names of 11 wildflowers found in our area of northeast Mercer, [and sometimes southern Rock Island, and western Henry counties], Illinois. To some they are wildflowers and to others, weeds. Some of the ugliest "weeds" have the prettiest flowers when they bloom. But most may prove undesirable in one's garden and landscaping. I think that thought may lead one to a fairly good definition of a weed: an undesirable plant in an undesirable place.
Some alien strains are invasive and actually destructive to the natural flora of our area -- such as Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata). In fact many of those plants pictured are alien and not naturally occurring plant species to Illinois - or the U.S. for that matter.
Since I've retired I have begun to research and collect local wildflowers, a category in which I will include both flowering plants and shrubs. I'm collecting these both photographically and physically, in some cases, by obtaining samples from our wooded property, nearby roadsides / pastures, and others from obliging property owners. All the wildflowers depicted in this clip are referred to by their common name; that is to say by the name I've heard them most often referred, or, if unknown to me until now, by the common name my research materials provide. I have not included their binomial names [Latin name] unless the plant is commonly referred to by that name -- which usually an abbreviated version using only the first part or genus of the plant....such as "Rudbeckia" for rudbeckia hertia, or, more commonly, "black-eyed-Susan;" or "Mertensia," the genus half of Mertensia virginica, or more commonly know as "Virgina Bluebells."
I've identified these plants using my own personal knowledge and observation of them, noting their physical characteristics, and, referencing this information through my trusty Peterson Field Guides, expert sources if available, and finally from official sources and research material on the internet.
This is a common man's study and a photographic record of my observations and is not a scientific instrument. Or it may be said this is simply a,"I'm fairly darn sure this is a: (fill in the blank)" guide. I would suggest you do your own research to confirm my view if you are really interested in this stuff. Many of the plants shown here have hundreds of species world - wide. In any event, if you Google the common name I give you, you will come up with a good number of suggestions. Good luck and best wishes.
A NOTE OF CAUTION: MANY OF OUR WILDFLOWERS AND WOODLAND PLANTS ARE MEDICINAL AND HERBAL, OTHERS ARE DEADLY POISONOUS OR TOXIC IN SOME WAY TO HUMANS AND ANIMALS - USE CAUTION AND CONDUCT YOUR OWN RESEARCH BEFORE USING THEM IN OR FOR FOODSTUFF OR IN ANIMAL FEED
WILDFLOWERS FEATURED HERE:
Trumpet - Creeper
Joe Pye Weed
wild potato - vine
Sainfoin (psoralea onobrychis)