Jan. 17, 2018

hairy puccoon, Lithospermum caroliniense

Hairy and his close cousin hoary are always a delight to meet. The bunches of nearly inch wide flowers are a particularly intense yellow. So much so that the plants were a source of red dye! Apparently the touch of red in the plant intensifies the color. Remember all those bad old western movies with warpainted faces? Well, pardner, this is where some of the real Indians got it. Hairy and hoary puccoon differ mostly because hairy is stiffly hirsute, while hoary has very short soft fuzz. Hairy grows in well drained sandy open areas in AL, AR, CO, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MS, NE, NY, OH(T), OK, PA(E), SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, WI, WV, and ON. Wilderness State Park, Emmet Co MI, 7/13/11.