Monthly Archives: November 2011

West Virginia Banana


Many people have heard the name Pawpaw, but few could identify it and fewer have eaten it.  Pawpaw, (Asimina triloba), is a common understory tree around here.  It is the only member of the custard apple family adapted to temperate … Continue reading

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Cattails – Supermarket of the Swamp


In his book, Stalking the Wild Asparagus, the late Euell Gibbons referred to the lowly cattail as the “supermarket of the swamp.”  I don’t think I’ve ever picked up a field guide on wild foods that didn’t profile these wetland … Continue reading

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Invasive Olives


Some landscaping can just be too adaptable.  The genus Eleagnus is a good example.  They make beautiful accent shrubs with pleasant fall aroma.  The undersides of the leaves have a silvery color that almost dances in the wind.  Oblong fruits … Continue reading

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Edible Landscaping


Sometimes when your landscaping goes to seed it creates a smelly and unsightly mess.  Other times it can just be an added benefit.  The flowering crabapple is a good example here. Crabapples, (Malus sp.), make a gorgeous small specimen tree … Continue reading

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Wild Passionflower – Friend or Fiend


It’s funny how you can look at some plants in the wild or in the domestic landscape and want to have them in your own backyard.  Wild passionflower or Maypop (Passiflora incarnata), is a prime example.  The flowers are so … Continue reading

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Black Walnut – Tree of Many Uses


Black walnut (Juglans nigra) is one of the most valuable native hardwood trees.  It has dark straight grained wood used for furniture and gunstocks.  If trunks are straight and no foreign material like nails are inside it likely would command … Continue reading

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Elderberries – An Old-Fashioned Treat


Elderberries:  An Old-fashioned treat I know you all have seen those saucer shaped clusters (umbels) of white flowers on the roadsides in early summer.  Toward the middle of the summer, reddish black berries about a quarter inch in diameter replace … Continue reading

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