Saturday, October 13, 2012

Stephens County: Russell Lake Wildlife Management Area

September 14th, 2012. We took off up to Stephens County and explored two separate areas: the LakeRussell Wildlife Management Area and Currahee Mountain.

Lake Russell WMA
The road ran through relatively dry habitat where we found a surprising number of wildfowers in bloom.

A Desmodium sp. – possibly Desmodium perplexum (Perplexed Tick Trefoil) based on the spicules on the leaf petioles.

The leaves. The spicules are visible on the petiole just below the leaf on the right.

Lobelia puberula (Downy Lobelia)

Pityopsis graminifolia (Narrowleaf Silkgrass) is differentiated easily from Pityopsis aspera (Pineland or Carolina Silkgrass) by the grass-like leaves at the base of the plant.

The plant with the grass-like leaves at the base

The flower

Helianthus sp.  My best guess is that this is Helianthus atrorubens (Purple-disc Sunflower, Hairy Wood Sunflower, Appalachian Sunflower) but it’s only a guess. I’d love to know if this is a helianthus.

The flower

The leaves

Agalinis purpurea (Purple False Foxglove or Purple Gerardia)

Chrysopsis mariana (Maryland Goldenaster)

The flower

The leaves

Helianthus sp. – possibly Helianthus giganteus (Giant Sunflower) – although the leaves don’t seem right for this species. These were very tall plants.

The flower

A bud

The leaves

Elephantopus tomentosus (Hairy elephantfoot or Devil’s Grandmother)

We were delighted to have found quite a variety or wildflowers along this very dry, dusty road. 
Next, Currahee Mountain.
Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resources:

Southeastern Flora:
Name that Plant: Native and Naturalized Plants of the Carolinas and Georgia:
Alan Cressler:

United States Department of Agriculture Plants Database:

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