Tall Grass Prairie Wildflowers

New England Asters

New England Asters © 2008

The last show of wildflowers in the prairies are in bloom. The prairies are full and thick, now beginning to yellow a bit. The New England Asters are easily cultivated, and found in many gardens, but they are especially handsome in the thickets of grasses on the prairie.

Rosin Weed

Rosin Weed © 2008

What a name for one of the most perfect prairie wildflowers I’ve seen in a long time! Rosin Weed is an excellent flower for the prairie, and used extensively in prairie restorations as it is attractive to bees, butterflies and birds.  Its sap contains resin which was once used as a chewing gum. (Ick – I’d rather have peppermint myself.)

Blue Vervain

Blue Vervain © 2008

This would be an easy flower to miss, except it grows so tall the flowers tend to stick out over many of the shorter grasses. The Blue Vervain flowers themselves are tiny – less than 1/4″ wide – but the plant stands up to 6 feet tall.

Vervain was a popular plant, well-known for its many medicinal uses – made into a brew and used as a tonic, an aphrodisiac, and a sedative. Centuries ago it was hung on European peasants’ doorways to ward off the devil and other evildoers, and it was worn as an amulet to bring good luck.

About Bo Mackison

I'm a photographer, book-artist, traveler, naturalist, and creator of the Contemplative Creatives Journey, An Online Workshop and Community and Desert Wisdom Cards and Workshops. Though often not well known, I find the desert a welcoming place - a healing space. Its mysteries and gifts transformed me several years ago. Since that first encounter, I return again and again to fill my well in what most people think of as a desolate region. I'd love to share my desert discoveries and wisdom with you. Please subscribe to receive my five part mini email course The Gifts of the Desert. It's my gift to you.


  1. Le monde des fleurs un vaste sujet qui procure beaucoup de plaisir.

    The world of the flowers a vast subject which gives much pleasure.

  2. The Blue Vervain is just wonderful. I also love the asters. I always know October in the Rio Grande Valley because of the blooming purple asters.

  3. Joanna Young says:

    Bo, what a wonderful set of pictures and I always enjoy learning about the plants and flowers from you too.

    A small thing – you seem to have moved to partial feeds just now – could I put in a plea to return to full feeds? I’m much more likely to dip in and comment if I can read the whole thing from my feed reader – and see the pictures too of course!


  4. Very striking series of the waning flowers of summer. I’ll miss them when they go.

  5. Beautiful wildflowers. Sad that they are so quickly fading.

  6. I’d love to walk through a prairie. This must be awesome.

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