Learning the Difference: Ginseng or Buckeye?

Is it ginseng? No, it’s buckeye. There are a few plants that grow here in the Ozarks that make it really difficult for newbies to identify ginseng. That’s because these look so much like ginseng to the inexperienced eye. These are called ginseng look-alikes. One of the look-alikes is Ohio buckeye (Aesculus flava). This is […]

Lousewort, Bumblebee Food and Medicinal Herb

Lousewort (Pedicularis canadensis) is an interesting plant. It’s a medicinal herb said to be effective at muscular pain relief. The bumblebees love it! An interesting find In May of 2014, I noticed an interesting plant. Well, I’m *always* noticing interesting plants, so it wasn’t the first time to notice an interesting plant, but the first […]

2018 Spring Awakening Watch – First Native Flowers of the Ozarks

It’s mid-March 2018 and I’m watching for the first native flowers of the Ozarks to start blooming. I particularly love the ephemeral blooms of early spring, like the bloodroot and Dutchmen’s breeches. Scroll down to see pictures and keep up with what’s blooming at Wild Ozark. If you’re looking specifically for the ginseng unfurling/blooming, you’ll […]

Vernal Witch Hazel Flowers and Hazelnut too!

Today I went out to take cuttings from the Ozark Witch Hazel in the hopes of rooting them. I wasn’t looking for an American Hazelnut, but that’s what I found! I found the Witch Hazels, too. But I already knew those were there. New finds are always so exciting to me, but I think most […]

What is Nature Farming? What does a Nature Farmer Grow?

What I mean by ‘Nature Farming’ is not the same as ‘natural farming’, ‘organic farming’, or ‘natural farming methods’. Explanations for all of these things come up when you do a search online for ‘nature farming’. But nothing turns up for true nature farming. Hopefully this post will show up in the search engine results […]

Virginia Creeper Seedling in my Ebony Spleenwort Fern

There’s a Virginia creeper  (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) seedling creeping up toward the light in my spleenwort fern (Asplenium platyneuron) container. I watched it for a few days with a suspicious eye as it unfurled, because I thought it might be a poison ivy. Virginia Creeper This isn’t one of my favorite plants. I’m only fascinated with it […]

Namesake of the Dragon – Another Green Dragon Drawing

Here’s the second of the Green Dragon drawings I’ve been working on. I posted the first part of it last week. This part is called the spathe (the hood) and the spadix (the long ‘tongue’) and it is the namesake of the dragon. This part of the plant is what becomes the cluster of red […]

A Green Dragon Drawing

I’ve been working on a Green Dragon drawing for the cover of NANPS’s summer issue of Blazing Star. There will be another of the spathe and spadix to do next. That one will be used in the article. Here’s the photograph I worked from. I used more than one photo because I didn’t have a […]

Ginseng Jelly – A Delicious Wild Ozark Luxury Product

Oh, my … GINSENG JELLY! I love medicinal herbs, especially those that grow right here at home, and most especially ginseng. This year’s ginseng jelly comes in two varieties: Ginseng Gold (4-oz, $25) Ginseng/Apple (8-oz, $25) Soft-set: thicker than syrup, thinner than jelly Both are delicious, but you’ll get more of the ginseng active ingredients […]

Driveway Flowers in September

It’s been bone dry lately. This morning I brought my camera with me so I could take pictures of the driveway flowers. Ordinarily this would have been an “exercise walk” and I wouldn’t have brought the camera because that would have just caused me to stop and take pictures. Which would have defeated the purpose […]

Orange Spotted Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)

In keeping with the “spotted” theme of my last post, here’s an orange spotted jewelweed flower. I’m always trying to get the perfect photo of this flower. A dream set-up would be when the sun is shining just *so* on it, to give the illusion of stained glass. There would be some nice glistening drops […]

Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis)

Cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) at the creek’s edge in late August. It’s one of the showiest Lobelia species that grows in the Arkansas Ozarks. About Wild Ozark Wild Ozark is a nature farm. Mostly we grow rocks. I use those rocks and some of the herbs to make earth pigments and watercolor paints. We also […]

How to Find Ginseng? First look for the right habitat.

Want to know how to find ginseng? Look for the right habitat. The easiest way to do that is to look for companion plants. If you’re looking for information about WHEN you can plant ginseng, then this article might be more helpful: When Can You Plant Ginseng. SPRING Today is March 20 and it’s either […]

Don’t Pick the (Hemlock) Flowers

 Take it from our grand-daughter. Don’t pick the hemlock flowers. A couple of weeks ago, Karter’s bouquet caused painful blisters. She picked wildflowers on an outing with her mom and friends down by the river. All the grandkids always love to pick flowers when they come over here, too. But from now on, they know […]

Elderberry Flowers Oil Infusion

Elderberry flowers have a light, sweet fragrance and all manners of pollinators love them. Which Elderberry Flowers? The variety I’m using for this is Sambucus canadensis, which is the native elderberry in our area.  Black elderberry (S. nigra) is the european comparative variety. Don’t use red elderberry if it grows in your area because that one […]

Ginseng in June

The ginseng in June here at Wild Ozark has small berries beginning to form. Some of the plants still have flowers, too. It’ll be late July before they begin turning red and that’s when I’ll begin pulling the tops off of most of the older plants.

Woodland Flowers of June at Wild Ozark

It’s been awhile since I’ve wandered with the camera, but this morning on my way to town I brought the camera just so I could capture some of my favorite woodland flowers blooming along the driveway and county road. The sparsely petaled wildflower in the photo above is the original version. It’s the wildflower that […]

Paw Paw Hiding the Hickory

About Wild Ozark Wild Ozark is a nature farm. Mostly we grow rocks. I use those rocks and some of the herbs to make earth pigments and watercolor paints. We also grow native clay that I use for paint and various other things. And then there are the trees. We grow lots of trees. My […]

April Spring flowers in the Ginseng Habitat

Lots of flowers in the ginseng habitat right now. The following are just a sample. Wild Ginger If you don’t mind getting down on the ground, you can see the wild ginger (Asarum canadense) blooming. Flowers are usually just below the leaf litter at the base of the stems. Mayapple The mayapples are blooming too. […]

Early Spring Plants of the Woodlands in Madison County Arkansas

I got a late start photographing the early spring plants this year (2017). They started without me and I’ve already missed some of them. These are some of the plants unfurling and blooming on April 1 in the woodland habitats here at Wild Ozark. Early Spring Plants This late afternoon shot of fern fiddleheads is […]

Watching for Witch Hazel Flowers

Witch Hazel Flowers Witch hazel flowers are an interesting sight to behold. The petals on the small flowers are thin and wild. The shrub blooms during the most unlikeliest time of the year. It is one of my favorite plants in the Ozarks. She is an untamed rebel, even if she or her hybridized cousins […]

Ginseng Garden Open to Public May 2017

Beginning in May 2017 there will be a place to go for anyone interested in seeing ginseng growing in its natural environment, and for learning about the habitat.

Wild Mountain Mint – Whiteleaf Mountain Mint

Wild mountain mint grows in abundance here at Wild Ozark. This particular variety is called White-leaf Mountain Mint. White-leaf Wild Mountain Mint (Pycnanthemum albescens) I love this wild mountain mint. It adds a nice flavor to my cold/flu/crud herbal syrup when I remember to gather it during late summer. This year I did 🙂 Recently […]

Ginseng Growing Season is Winding Down, Digging Winding Up

Usually low prices of any traded good means there is either low demand or over-supply. The case with ginseng this year, according to the dealers who have shared information with me, is both. The demand is lower because of overseas economy. And there is over-supply. Many dealers still have dried roots to sell from the previous season.

Slugs and Dragons and Ginseng, Oh My! Wild Ozark Creations

I’ve been working on a few new Wild Ozark creations lately. This creative streak seems to have no end in sight, either, because ideas just keep coming and I keep feeling compelled to follow them through. Slugs This is the latest drawing I’ve done. The digital and print rights (for business branding, not art prints) […]