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Wildflowers on our farm | New World Seeds & Tubers

Our seeds and tubers are grown in multiple locations, mostly around Puget Sound in northwestern Washington State, but we have a farm down in the Chehalis River Valley on rich silty alluvial soil next to the Chehalis River.

Some of the acreage is on gravelly higher ground. We do grow some crops up there but not everything is adaptable to the drier, thinner soil. However, we do get lots of wildflowers, both native and naturalized. Since the property is not intensively used, there are plenty of scraps of land where they can grow undisturbed, especially now that it’s in relatively gentle hands.

This one is Leucanthemum vulgare, aka Oxeye Daisy. It’s not native but looks like it must be, being absolutely ubiquitous all over the Pacific Northwest, typically along roads.

Here’s another one common around the gravel pit dug by a previous owner:

Digitalis purpurea, aka “Foxgloves”. These are growing in a gravel put that a previous owner dug. Digitalis is the source of the drug of the same name, used to slow down the heart during surgery to keep patients from bleeding to death. So, while deadly poisonous, it’s also a life-saver.

Ever wonder why foxes wear gloves? They don’t; “fox” is corrupted from “folks”, as in the wee people of Ireland–fairies I think. I imagine that each flower is supposed to look like a wee mitten.

We’ve got other flowers too, including some natives. It seems as though the Wild Balsam (Impatiens capensis) must be native but reputedly it came from the eastern USA. Never heard of anyone actually cultivating it so; not sure how it got here.

“Wild Balsam” is the name of the farm.

One of these days I’ll look for some photos of it. It won’t be blooming again for a while yet. I’ve tried saving seeds and growing some but it seems resistant to domestication.

I get a few wild, presumably native Lupines on the farm but haven’t seen any lately.

One of the most beautiful local wildflowers is the Camassia. Not sure which species. Unfortunately, the uses to which previous owners put the farm doomed whatever specimens probably used to grow on the property itself, though they are a abundant around the drainage ditches along the roads just past the gates. Eventually I’ll get some re-established on the farm. I’ve got a few of another species I rescued from elsewhere, that I’ll set loose on the farm when I get the chance.

More pictures later.

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