Iowa wildflower Wednesday: Fall berries and seeds

As Thanksgiving approaches, I’m wrapping up the tenth year of Bleeding Heartland’s wildflowers series. I’m so grateful to the guest authors who contributed posts and photographs this year: Katie Byerly, Lora Conrad, Tommy Hexter and Jacy Highbarger, Elizabeth Marilla, Marla Mertz, Bruce Morrison, Leland Searles, Kenny Slocum, and Patrick Swanson.

Iowa wildflower Wednesday will return sometime during the spring of 2022. Please let me know if you would like to write about any one plant, or group of plants that thrive in a similar habitat, or special place or trail. Anyone on Facebook can connect with nature lovers year round in the Iowa wildflower enthusiasts group, which now has more than 5,300 members.

To close out this year’s series, Lora Conrad contributed nine photographs of berries or berry-like fruit that can be found on plants in Van Buren County at this time of year. All but one are native to Iowa.

The first two images show berries on Coralberry (Symphoricarpos orbiculatus), a member of the Honeysuckle family:

Wild poinsettia seeds. Lora profiled those plants for Bleeding Heartland in 2017.

Pokeweed or poke berries (Phytolacca americana). Lora profiled these plants in 2019.

Horse nettle or Carolina horsenettle berries (Solanum carolinense).

Pods from a honey locust tree (Gleditsia triacanthos).

Poison ivy berries (Toxicodendron radicans).

Eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana).

Lora’s final picture features Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii), an invasive plant.

Jo Hain, a member of the Iowa wildflower enthusiasts Facebook group, took this picture on November 20. Lora Conrad identified the plant as an Eastern Wahoo (Euonymus atropurpureus), which she profiled in 2018.

Tags: Wildflowers
  • I'm very thankful...

    …for the Wildflower Wednesday series, which reminds us every week of the beauty and diversity of Iowa flora. These berries are just as beautiful as flowers. And it’s interesting to be reminded that though Amur honeysuckle is a huge ecological problem in Iowa, it is also a beautiful plant.

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