Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Wild Lupine, Sundial

Named for Canis lupus, the wolf, because it was once blamed for robbing the soil of its fertility, Lupinus perennis grows in deep, droughty sand in the northwest third of Indiana.
Not only is it showy and attractive, it is critically important as the only host for the larvae of the federally endangered Karner Blue Butterfly.
Dense colonies of lupine are required to sustain the Karner Blue, but in the modern landscape sandy oak savannas and sand prairie remnants become shady oak woods all too soon due to fire suppression, and lupines often get shaded to death.
Photographed in Starke County, Indiana on a south-facing, dry sandy bank in the Kankakee River country, near the northwest 1/4 of the state.

"Every creature is better alive than dead, men and moose and pine trees, and he who understands it aright will rather preserve its life than destroy it." Henry David Thoreau

4 comments:

Marianne, aka Ranger Anna said...

Love to see the Lupine! Here in Oak Openings we're part of a "re-establishment" program for Karner Blues. So far, so good!

Keith Board said...

Thanks for commenting Marianne. Best wishes for continued success with lupines and Karner Blues!

Pete said...

Love that top photo with the rosettes of leaves.

On Thoreau's thoughts, I wonder, would he have also included wolves in that statement? I would have to think so. He was wise far beyond his times. It's hard to believe he possessed all that wisdom before he died at such a young age of 45.

Keith Board said...

Thanks Pete!

I agree that Thoreau would have included wolves in that statement. He loved the wilderness and all that was part of it, and never could get enough. And he certainly wasn't afraid of the bears as he climbed Mt. Ktahdin in Maine.