Aster, New England

Scientific Name: Sympyotrichum novae-angliae

Family: Asteraceae

Height: 3-6 ft

Spread: 2-4 ft

Bloom Time: September-October

Native Range: North America, Pennsylvania

Ecological Value: Larval host for Pearl Cresent and checker spot butterflies. Nectar plant for bees and butterflies.

Human Value: Medicinally used as a decoction to treat weeks skin and as a poultice for pain, fever, and diarrhea.


Soapwort / Bouncing Bett

Scientific Name: Saponaria officinalis

Family: Caryophyllaceae

Height: 1-2.5 ft.

Spread: 1-2 ft.

Bloom Time: June-August

Native Range: Europe and western Asia

Ecological Value: Nectar plant.

Human Value: Europeans introduced soapwort in colonial times. Sap from the stems and roots was mixed with water to create a lathery soap.


Sumac, Fragrant

Scientfic Name: Rhus aromatica

Family:  Anacardiaceae

Height: 1.5-2 ft

Spread: 6-8 ft

Bloom Time: April-May

Native Range: Eastern North America, Pennsylvania

Ecological Value: Larval host. Berries.

Human Value: Native Americans used leaves and bark for medicines. Both could be used for tanning of leather. The berries soaked in water can be used to make sumac-aide.