Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Downy Lobelia (Lobelia puberula)

August 25th, 2012. Downy Lobelia (Lobelia puberula) – at least that’s my conclusion. I don’t know lobelias very well but this identification seems to fit the characteristics of these plants we found growing on the east-facing side of the dam at Pond 6A in the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge in Jones County, Georgia.
There were just a few plants growing on the south end of the dam. They would have gone unnoticed if it hadn’t been for the flash of blue as was drove over the dam. The plants are in the center of the photo just a little above the edge of the pond

At ‘lobelia level’, looking out along the south side of the pond.

The leaves

The arrangement of the flowers around the ‘downy’ stem. I’d never really noticed until this year that the flowers are arranged in a spiral pattern up the stem.

Closer views of individual flowers

Lobelia puberula (Downy Lobelia, Hairy Lobelia) is native to the United States, where it’s found in states southeast of a line from New Jersey to Illinois and southwest to Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. In Georgia, it’s found in many counties throughout the state but more frequently in north Georgia and in southern counties.


Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resources:
- Southeastern Flora: Lobelia puberula (Downy Lobelia)
- Name that Plant: Native and Naturalized Plants of the Carolinas and Georgia: Lobelia puberula (Downy Lobelia, Hairy Lobelia)
- Missouri Plants: Lobelia puberula
- Alabama Plants: Lobelia puberula 

- United States Department of Agriculture Plants Database: Lobelia puberula (Downy Lobelia)
- University of North Carolina Herbarium: Lobelia puberula

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