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OT: (h)air balls
  • Subject: OT: (h)air balls
  • From: "Donald Eaves" <donald@eastland.net>
  • Date: Fri, 21 May 2010 21:06:36 -0500


Can anyone id this plant? For the minute I'm calling it the 'air ball'
plant. I'm assuming it's in the dandelion family, but not sure. It's
growing in some lots in town and along some streets that aren't mowed often.
I don't have it out here on the farm. The bloom is inconspicuous when it
blooms, though sorta neat if you look for it. The plant is somewhat rangy
and pretty sparse for foliage, but it grows 2'-3'. The sequence of the
photos is in order for what it does from bloom to dispersing the seed
(about 3 days). Those 'air balls' are quite something and very showy.
About 4" across and where the hair comes off the seed stem are very metallic
brassy or gold 'stars' in the head. I shouldn't even be considering trying
to collect some and trying them since it doesn't appear to be any kind of
forage the cattle would eat, but those tannish (h)air balls are really neat
and I'm tempted. I will note the little ground sparrows love them and eat
the seeds.

Brock's camera could really do something with these!

Donald Eaves
Texas Zone 7b, USA

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