I love living in a place where I can find new (to me) wildflowers blooming for Christmas. December not only added nine more species to my repertoire, but kept several of my faithful fall favorites in bloom.
Here’s my roundup of all the wildflowers that I found blooming in Key West during the month of December. Click on the common names to visit the individual species’ pages.
All the field guides I’ve looked at show bushy seaside oxeye blooming in full glory with a thick rim of ray flowers and topped with black anthers, but I most often see it sporting few, if any, ray flowers.
Borrichia frutescens flower bud and leaf in profile
Previously, this invasive plant was recognized as one of two different species in Florida, (J. azoricum and J. bahiense) based on minor appearances and geographic distributions, but the current accepted name is Jasminum fluminense.
(adj.) growing in disturbed areas, on waste ground, or among rubbish
I live on a 2×4 mile chunk of dead coral that protrudes only 18 feet above the ocean. The cost of living is exorbitant and the competition for housing is fierce- for both people and plants. Many of our most common wildflowers aren’t much different than the humans in Key West- we both put a lot of effort into living in paradise.
It never fails – find a hairy caterpillar with kids and they always claim that it’s “the one that stings!” To be fair, this one was virulently green with black-tipped spines and a bold red stripe- it certainly looked a bit dangerous. Never having met this beauty before, however, I decided to test the theory.
Still working on identifying this one. Please comment if you have any ideas. I know it is in the dayflower family, but it doesn’t have the translucent lower petals of Commelina erecta, but I didn’t get a good enough picture of the other parts to narrow the ID down. Luckily, I can revisit this plant tomorrow.