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Native wildflowers are painting the landscape with their colorful blossoms! Are you using native wildflowers in your garden? Native species are adapted to the Illinois climate. They require little or no watering and are resistant to drought, insects and disease. They also provide food and shelter for native wildlife. Because they are perennials, you can welcome their presence year after year.
blue-eyed Mary (Collinsia verna)
Photo © 2009, River Valley Photographic Resources, Ltd., rvprltd.com
Blue-eyed Mary grows statewide in Illinois in rich woods. A member of the snapdragon family, this species blooms from April through June. The distinctive flowers have upper lobes that are white and lower lobes that are bright blue. The plant may grow to 24 inches tall. Leaves are lance-shaped and arranged oppositely on the stem.
For more information about native Illinois plants, including where to purchase them and planting guides, the following publications are available through the order form at http://dnr.state.il.us/teachkids.
Prairie Establishment and Landscaping
Landscaping for Wildlife