Fayetteville Visit

Wherever I go, local plants are a must see.  Recently we were in Fayetteville, AR, for a wedding.  It was, of course, hot and HUMID.  But we did take a short walk on a path behind the hotel.

Fayetteville has an extensive paved bike and walking path.  This part was beside a small stream.

As expected, there were plants that I didn’t recognize.  Lovely clusters of pink flowers.  Because the growth along the water was so thick, it was difficult to determine which stems the flowers were growing on.  I was hesitant to put my hand down into the plants to pull them apart.

Many of the plants along the water were riparian, but it was surprising to see many plants that also do well in our drier area.  Mimosas (Albizia julibrissin) or Persian silk trees grow in our area but probably need extra watering.

Although it’s native to China, the botanical name comes from an Italian nobleman Filippo degli Albizzi, who brought them to Europe in the 1700’s.

These flowers are growing on individual stems from the main stems.  The flowers have a similar look as Black-eyed Susans.

This certainly looks like Desert False Indigo.  Correction.  A reader identified this as Sumac.

This is our Desert False Indigo in early spring. The leaves will fill in to make the plant look more like the one in Fayetteville.

The seed heads on the one in Fayetteville are little different shape.

The dark seed head clusters on ours are longer and thinner.  But surely they are in the same family.

On the other side of the walkway was a tall stone wall.  It was a retainer wall for the  higher ground level of the businesses at street level.

The bell like flowers are so pretty, but I wondered if they were invasive.  So many vines in our area are invasive and difficult to get rid of.  And some of them also have pretty flowers.

In late spring, I spent several hours digging up a vine with purple flowers that had become very well intrenched.  In the process, I had to lose quite a few other plants.

Along that same side of the path was this group of tall asters or sunflowers.  They reminded me of the Swamp Sunflowers in my yard.

But the flowers are very different.

Our Swamp Sunflowers have different flowers and leaves but are on tall stems.

The rehearsal dinner was outdoors.  Although the servers for the meal are messing up the aesthetics with their dishes on the rock wall of the flowerbed, the Hydrangeas still look glorious.

Hydrangeas originate in China, but the French hybridized them into the beauties we see today.  American growers have several varieties with a limelight shade of “mop heads”.

The world is full of amazing plants with specific needs.  Some people in our area do have success with hydrangeas, but they require lots of water, which in turn requires daily attention.

“A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except how to grow in rows.”  Doug Larson

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