Brazilian Pepper

Schinus terebinthifolia

After foraging in Punta Gorda last week with Green Deane, Brazilian pepper seems to pop up everywhere (as invasives do). The plan is to roast and grind the sweet and spicy berries, then sprinkle over popcorn.

Schinus terebinthifolia

Click here for more about a storied ornamental listed on the Florida Department of Agriculture’s Noxious Weed List.

Swamp Lily

Crinum americanum

Billy Creek Preserve and Filter Marsh

Blocks from strip malls on four lanes of fifty mile an hour traffic straddling a median crossed at dawn and dusk by Guatemalan day laborers rests fifty-six acres of marsh designed and engineered to clean and filter water destined for the Caloosahatchee. It’s a rad place to ride your bike.

Billy Creek Preserve and Filter Marsh

Click here for more about the preserve.

Ephemeral Ghost Pipe

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Monotropa uniflora

The illusive rows of ghostly flowers are actually a fungus feeding on fungi that’s feeding on tree roots. They’re epiparasites, or parasites sourcing nutrients from other parasites.

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Monotropa unifloraHiawa

Eastern Native American tribes once used ghost pipe as an anticonvulsive and painkiller.

Reclamation

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Taraxacum officinale

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Kalanchoe daigremontiana

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Portulaca oleracea

 

Succulents and dandelions reclaim sandy soil from a tired, cracking tennis court. In the words of author Richard Powers, “There’s always as much belowground as above.”