Pretty and Not

Bush honeysuckle fruit, Lower Nine Mile Run Trail, 23 Sep 2021 (photo by Kate St. John)

24 September 2021

In late September the most abundant fruits and flowers are often on invasive plants. Some are pretty, some are not.

Clusters of bright red berries look festive on bush honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica) as they change from green to brown to red.

Porcelain berries (Ampelopsis glandulosa) are beautiful up close in turquoise and purple.

A few porcelain berry flowers are still in bloom.

But step back and the vine’s invasive habits are ugly as it drapes trees and hillsides. Yes, there are a couple of trees under the vine.

Meanwhile, in my opinion mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) is unredeemable. In June it crowds the sunny edges of trails.

A thick stand of mugwort in June is not full height yet (photo by Kate St. John)

In September it’s tall and gangly with drooping green and brown stems. Are the brown bits seed pods?

No. They are ugly flowers.

Not pretty.

(photos by Kate St. John)

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