“The Guide to Oklahoma Wildflowers” authored by Patricia Folley
It’s incredibly hard to find guides that focus specifically on native Oklahoma flora. Most guides seem to lump us into a wide range of categories- from the (inconceivable) Southwest, the (mildly acceptable) Midwest, and the (correct) South, to even just simply “Prairie” (which, while accurate, does not account for our full landscape and includes several areas with which we share no flora). Finding a guide that was just about Oklahoma was nice.
Like most of my favorite books, this one includes full color images of the plants in question. In fact, it tends to lean towards providing two of them: One of the plant and its components up close, and another of it with its surroundings, taken from a decent distance. This has been incredibly helpful in learning to recognize and identify various plants. That being said, however, I do wish that some of these pictures had been better quality; several times it’s hard to make out the flower even in the up close shots of it. Other times the details of the plants are lost in the massive tangle of background growth so that they’re harder to see or pinpoint in the image.
I also noticed that some of our common ones were missing- like Black Medic and another that I couldn’t tell you the name of since I haven’t been able to identify myself (it’s a very gorgeous purple one that grows near my house in the same environment that Yellow Sweetclover and Ohio Spiderwort favors). Though to be honest, their lack of inclusion might simply be that they’re not classified as Wildflowers. Still, this book is invaluable if you’re interested in Oklahoma Wildflowers as a subsect of Prairie flora.
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