Weeds Are Flowers Also! They're fascinating even if they aren't beautiful.

the background information is all from Wikipedia.

After my last story, I wanted to do one more and finally came up with the idea of using 'weeds' and here it is.

The previously "unknown" In the initial version was finally identified by Cindy Reid, who works at Alpine Flowers and gifts, as a "Hattie's pincushion". I found and included some background and re-sequenced it alphabetically. Thank you very much cindy.

Birds-foot Trefoil

  • Native to grassland in temperate Eurasia and North Africa.
  • AKA - Bird's-foot deervetch.
  • The flower is less than 1/2" across.
  • It is often used as forage and widely used as food for livestock due to its non-bloating properties.
Red veining makes the petals look 'creased'.
The bigger petal looks out of place compared to the small one.
Closer still.

Canadian Thistle

  • Native to south eastern Eurasia and widely introduced elsewhere.
  • AKA - Creeping thistle, Field thistle.
  • The flower is about 3/4" across.
  • It's noted for it's tenacity and spread once established and its thorns easily pierce skin and clothing.
  • I was very surprised when it went to seed during the 3+ week period that I photographed it.
How a stalk of it started.
A beautiful 'explosion' of seeds that eventually fell off and covered a large area of my tabletop.
Even closer to see the seed's details.


  • Native to temperate Europe, but is widely naturalized outside its native range.
  • AKA - Bachelor's Button
  • Size: About 1" across.
  • Folklore: They were worn by young men in love; if the flower faded too quickly, it was taken as a sign that the man's love was not returned.
  • Symbology: The blue cornflower has been the national flower of Estonia since 1968.
The colours and shapes are very impressive.
A closer view to show more details.
Even closer view of the centre.


  • Native to Eurasia and North America.
  • The common name is believed to come from the French term "dent-de-lion" meaning "lion's tooth".
  • Size: About 1" across.
  • The two commonplace species worldwide were imports from Europe that now propagate as wildflowers - both species are edible in their entirety.
I'd never considered looking this close - the structure is fascinating.
Not just the 'yellow ball' that I was used to seeing growing in the ground.
So many things to look at.

Devil's Paintbrush

  • Native to alpine regions of central and southern Europe, where it's protected in several regions.
  • AKA - Orange hawkweed.
  • Size: About 3/4" across.
  • The flowers are orange, almost red, which is virtually invisible to bees, yet they also reflect ultraviolet light, increasing their conspicuousness to pollinators.
The flower's base looks to me like a thistle's as there's so much hair.
The edges of the petals look very similar to those of a dandelion.
Another species with so many details and colours to see.

Hairy Vetch

  • Native to Europe and western Asia.
  • AKA - Fodder vetch or Winter vetch
  • Size: 1 1/2" long and about 1/2" across.
  • It is widely used by organic growers as 'Green Manure' - see details at the bottom of the story.
There's a lot of 'hair' on most parts of it.
The colour variations are fascinating.
Hair and colour variations are very visible on the back.

Hattie's Pincushion (Previously 'unknown')

  • Native to Central, Eastern and Southern Europe and the Caucasus
  • AKA - Masterwort, Melancholy Gentleman
  • Size: The flowers are about 1 1/2" across
The form and variegated colouration is intriguing - the petals look like paper.
The pink fringing on the petal's edges is an added bonus.
The inside structure is also fascinating and the green pattern on the inside and outside of the petals reminds me of a spider's web.


  • Native throughout most of Europe and Western Asia (Near and Middle east) - it's been introduced and naturalised in North America..
  • AKA - Mead wort
  • Size: The flower clusters are about 1 1/2" across.
  • History: In 1897, Felix Hoffman created a synthetically altered version of salicin from this species which caused less digestive upset than pure salicylic acid. The new drug was named Aspirin, by his employer Bayer AG - this gave rise to the class of drugs known as non-steroidal anti-inflamatory (NSAIDs).
I found the colours, shapes and textures to be fascinating.
A closer look at the structures.
An even closer view.

Queen Anne's Lace

  • Native to temperate regions of Europe and southwest Asia, and naturalized to North America and Australia.
  • AKA - Wild carrot, Bird's nest, Bishop's lace
  • Size: About 4" across
  • History: Both Anne, Queen of Great Britain, and her great grandmother, Anne of Denmark, are taken to be the Queen Anne for which the plant is named. It is so called because the flower resembles lace; the red flower in the center is thought to represent a blood droplet where Queen Anne pricked herself with a needle when she was making the lace.
Many small clusters gives the impression of a much larger flower.
Looking up inside from underneath.
A close-up from the top to show the structure of all the tiny flowers.

Red Clover

  • Native to Europe, Western Asia and Northwest Africa but planted and naturalised in many other regions..
  • Size: About 1/2" across
  • Like the Hairy Vetch, it too is used as 'Green Manure' - see details at the bottom of the story.
  • Symbology: It's the national flower of Denmark and the state flower of Vermont.
The shades and stripes on the petals are clearly visible.
The structure of the individual petals and base are apparent.
Looking down on the very top of the flower.

Sallow Sedge

  • Native to North America.
  • AKA - Lurid sedge.
  • Size: About 3/4" long x 1/4" across.
  • I think this is identified correctly but I'm not absolutely certain.
I found the colouration and texture fascinating.
It too is very hairy and reminds me of a pussy willow.
The seeds and hairs are clearly visible.

White Campion

  • Native to most of Europe, Western Asia and Northern Africa and has been naturalised in North America.
  • AKA - White cockle. In parts of England, it's called 'Grave Flower' or 'Flower of the Dead' as it's often seen growing on gravesites and around tombstones.
  • Size: About 1" across.
I was drawn to its shape, texture and colours - most surfaces are covered with small hairs.
A side view shows the texture and colours.
A view from the back - hairs and all.

Yellow Loosestrife

  • Native to central Europe and Turkey.
  • Size: About 3/4" across.
  • Not to be confused with the noxious weed Purple Loosestrife.
The colours and form are really nice.
It too has parts that are covered in hairs.
Internal structure and hairs visible on the petal's edges.

Green manure

It's created by leaving uprooted or sown crop parts to wither on a field so that they serve as a mulch and soil amendment - the plants used are often cover crops grown primarily for this purpose. Typically, they are ploughed under and incorporated into the soil while green or shortly after flowering. The practise is commonly associated with organic farming and can play an important role in sustainable annual cropping systems.

Being a 'city boy', I'd never heard of this concept so I'm including it in case there's others like me.

Created By
Roy Beauvais

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