Plants of the Week - Cup Plant and Compass Plant


Today we will have 2 plant picks.They are favorites of two of our regular guests, both are great pollinator plants, and they both happen to be in the same genus (plants not our guests)!

First, is a favorite of the Arbor Doctor, Ron Rothhaas, and is shows as he has them planted all around his landscape.You do not see them much, probably because of their size and aggressiveness, but they are quite a dinner and a show.Its Silphium perfoliatum, or commonly known as Indian Cup, or Cup Plant.This native perennial can get up to 6 feet tall (or more), is covered with numerous large yellow daisy / sunflowers like flowers (20-30 yellow rays on each with a darker yellow center), and the stout leaves are joined at the stem to form a small cup that holds water and attracts the birds.Attracts birds, hummingbirds, and butterflies (as well as lots of looks from the neighbors) and bees love the nectar. Loves the sun / flowers mid-summer to fall / drought tolerant yet will grow in moist soils

(Images from Arbor Doc’s landscape)

Second is a favorite of the one and only Buggy Joe Boggs, and he is seen a lot this time of the year spinning and dancing in meadowns filled with these plants.They’re Silphium laciniatum, or commonly known as Compass Plant.A true icon of the prairie, this native perennial can reach up to 8 feet in height, and is quite a sight when in flower when the smaller birds flit from flower to flower eating insects and seeds.Not a sunlfower yet sort of has that appearance, this is another summer dinner and a show.By the way, its called Compass Plant as the leaves have a tendency to orient themselves on a north – south axis.It helped disoriented early Settlers find their way. And when Joe feels disoriented, he pulls one from his pocket and gets redirected.Loves sun or part sun / drought tolerant but will take moist soils / flowers June thru Septemeber.


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