Vernonia lettermannii

Information courtesy of Magna Vista High School students

 

 

 

 

 

Vernonia lettermannii, "Ironweed," is a perennial wildflower named after George W. Letterman. He was a recluse and botanist who spent his days searching for rare plants in the Missouri, Ozarks.  

Ironweed flourishes in the late summer. It will begin to bloom small clusters of royal purple flowers. Butterflies and other pollinators flock to the florets. This species thrives in dry open woods or in sunny gardens, with average well drained soil. It is usually 2 to 3 feet in height​.

Identification 

Alternate Leaf Arrangement 

 

Entire Edges 

 

Parallel Venation

 

Acuminate Apex

 

Subulate Shape

 

Compound

Family: Asteraceae

 

Chrysanthemums

 

Zinnias

 

Status: Not endangered, common in the U.S.

 

Native: Introduced to Arkansas was the first place it was discovered in America

 

Origin: Originally from Eastern Africa

 

Scientific name: Vernonia lettermannii

 

Common Names:

 

Narrow-leaf Ironweed

 

Iron Butterfly Ironweed

 

Insects:

 

Butterflies, they even helped to name this flower

 

Bees, which help to pollinate the plant

 

Caterpillars of some moths

Niche: Ironweed is a very common plant in the western states, growing in the woods and prairies, and along river streams, and flowering from July to September. This plant plays a very important ecological role. It attracts butterflies and provides them with nectar. If the plant was to be demolished or gotten rid of, most butterfly populations would decrease dramatically.

Ironweed Uses

Some of the products that can be made from vernonia include adhesives, varnishes and paints, and industrial coatings, and can be used as a solvent in oil-based paints. Some different types of vernonia have been said to be used for medical purposes

http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/646/#b

 

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0305197887900585

 

http://www.newmoonnursery.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/plants.plantdetail/plant_ID/520/index.htm

 

http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?taxonid=299917&isprofile=0&pt=8

 

https://www.britannica.com/plant/Asteraceae

 

https://www.highcountrygardens.com/perennial-plants/unique-plants/vernonia-lettermanii-iron-butterfly

 

http://www.henriettes-herb.com/eclectic/kings/vernonia.html

 

https://www.google.com/search?q=fairy+candle+plant&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwihzp7Wir_WAhXIJJoKHZpCCkwQ_AUICygC&biw=1366&bih=671

 

https://www.google.com/search?tbm=isch&q=iron+butterfly+plant&spell=1&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj_oovjir_WAhVKNxQKHUxwAtUQvwUIIygA&biw=1366&bih=671&dpr=1

Vernonia lettermannii.png