Horticulture Supervisor, Kyle Cheesborough
Purple poppy mallow (Callirhoe involucrate), is a creeping, spreading Missouri native perennial. The brilliant magenta blooms appear beginning in late spring and persist through the summer, becoming sporadic into the fall. Purple poppy mallow is very drought tolerant and does well in dry garden plots once established. The copious flowers provide nectar in abundance for native bees, and the gray hairstreak butterfly uses Callirhoe as a larval host plant. Purple poppy mallow roots can be burned, crushed and dried for inhalation to treat head colds. Aching limbs can be exposed to smoke from burning roots to reduce pain. Alternatively, the roots can be boiled into a tea and consumed for pain relief.
The thimbleberry (Rubus odoratus), is a hardy, suckering shrub native to the eastern U.S. In mid-spring and into summer, fuchsia flowers appear in light clusters and are a delight for bumble bees and honey bees. In late summer and fall, very small, raspberry-like fruits ripen and are a favorite of birds and small mammals. Being closely related
to the wild raspberry, the thimbleberry can become a nuisance due to the suckering and spreading canes, but unlike its cousin, the canes are thornless and very easy to remove for control. The maple-like foliage drops in fall, revealing beautiful, exfoliating, golden-brown bark, a nice characteristic for winter interest.
Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Becky’) is an outstanding, tough perennial blooming prolifically through the summer and into fall. The thick, dark-green mounds of foliage can reach three feet in height,with the white, yellow-eyed, daisy-like flowers adding another foot or so. Typically forming a dense mass of foliage, the flowers will cover the tops of the plant and serves as an excellent cut flower. The Shasta daisy can be aggressive as it spreads, but they are easily maintained by digging to remove unwanted sprouts.
compiled by Cara L. Crocker