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Reference List for North Carolina Wildflower Identification

Site Description
North Carolina Native Plants Society Native Plants GalleryGallery of North Carolina plants, thumbnail photos organized alphabetically by scientific name. List of plants can be searched by common or scientific name. Very nice collection of native NC orchid photographs.
North Carolina WildflowersNC State University Horticultural Sciences Department Large number of nice wildflower photographs with additional descriptive information about each plant. View thumbnails by color, or get a list by common name or scientific name.
Carolina NatureCarolina Nature is the personal website of Will Cook, a researcher in plant ecology at Duke University. While the website has other things besides wildflowers, the link here will take you to the North Carolina Plant Photos page. There Mr. Cook lists over 160 species of wildlowers with links to his pages with description and photographs.
2bnTheWild.com Daniel Reed's excellent 2bnthewild Site has photographs, identification information, and other interesting information about wildflowers (and other wildlife subjects) from the Southeastern United States. Since "Southeastern United States" isn't defined I've chosen my own list of states from the perspective that Daniel appears to be located near Memphis.
Hiking Trail Wildflowers and Plants by the OFHCAs of Aug 22, 2009, 325 species by the 30 members of the "Old Friends Hiking Club" taken as they hike the trails of northeast Georgia, southwest North Carolina, and northwest South Carolina. Flower lists are available sorted by common name, scientific name, or time of year the photo was taken. The thumbnail description also tells which trail on which the photo was taken.
Southeastern FloraSome very nice esthetically-pleasing identification photographs of a large number of wildflowers. Search criteria includes flower color, plant form (tree/shrub/herb/vine), leaf type, leaf arrangement, and species/common/family name. Note: If you don't know the entire name, use "%" at the end as a wild-card in the search. From the site: "...Currently there are over 1020 species listed on this site and over 14,400 pictures to help you identify what you're looking for..." This is an increase of 90 species in the 2 months between 8/15/09 and 10/15/09.
All Taxa Biodiversity InventoryRather comprehensive list of species inhabiting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The link goes to the wildflower photo galleries, since I've found that navigating there from the home page can be somewhat difficult. Official Citation: All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory. 2008. The ATBI Database. Discover Life in America, Gatlinburg, Tennessee 37738. http://www.dlia.org/atbi/science/atbi_database.shtml
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at AustinPremier native wildflower information site in the United States. "Native Plant Database - Search 7,024 native plant records by traits or names. Image Gallery - Browse through our collection of 23,770 native plant images. Ask Mr. Smarty Plants - Have a question? Mr. Smarty Plants has 3,584 answers. How To Articles - Don't know where to start, try one of our articles."
USDA Plants DatabaseGreat resource! Their own description: "The PLANTS Database provides standardized information about the vascular plants, mosses, liverworts, hornworts, and lichens of the U.S. and its territories." Provides these important (to me) pieces of info: 1) Listing by state and county within a state where specific species have been identified. 2) Scientific name synonyms are listed. 3) Scientific names are matched to a widely-used common name. 4) Photographs of many species. 5) State by state list of all the species identified in that state. Official Citation: USDA, NRCS. 2009. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov, 22 June 2009). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.
Flicker Wildflower Field Guide, North AmericaOver 9,000 Flickr member photos tagged with wfgna. The WFGNA group has good tagging requirements for their excellent photos, so you'll find, in addtion to the photo, the state in which the photo was taken, and at least a common name and the scientific name as identified by the contributor. After you get to the linked page you should add search criteria, including the state name, the color of the plant, or scientific name, to reduce the number of photos. Several states have several hundred photos(California has over 1,500!) so you'll probably want to add color to the search criteria.
Book at Amazon: Wildflowers Of Tennessee, The Ohio Valley and the Southern Appalachians A product of the Tennessee Native Plant Society, this excellent and comprehensive field guide covers over 1250 species using 800 photographs and valuable descriptive text. While the focus is Tennessee, it's area of coverage includes the entire states of Kentucky and West Virginia, as well as large parts of 13 other states. In addition to the description of the plants it has an interesting look at botany from a historical perspective of the region. While the main part of the book is organized by plant family, there is a color-keyed section of thumbnails that allows a quick scan for identification, and there are illustrated keys for 12 of the families.

This is my favorite wildflower identification book that I have, and I consider it a "must have" for wildflower enthusiasts in the region.
Wildflower Information.orgFrom the site: "WildflowerInformation.org is a resource for wildflower enthusiasts and gardeners. With a growing interest in the environment and natural gardening, our objective is to offer comprehensive information that is easy to use, and accessible for those from the casually interested to the expert."

While this information doesn't appear to be on the website itself, WildflowerInformation.org seems to be owned by American Meadows, the "recommended wildflowers seed supplier" of WildflowerInformation.org.
Book at Amazon: National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Wildflowers--E: Eastern Region - Revised Edition"...gives full descriptions of more than 650 species found east of the Rocky Mountains, along with notes on several hundred more. The eminently sensible organization relies on first-impression visible characteristics..."
I use this guide frequently, and unless I have a good idea what family a flower is in, this is usually still my first stop. In my opinion, a must-have for beginning wildflower enthusiasts; augments more locale-specific wildflower references.
Number of References 13

USWildflowers.com Database

Family Index for 400 Wildflowers of North Carolina

Thumbnails of 400 Wildflowers of North Carolina


White Wildflowers of North Carolina (178)


Yellow Wildflowers of North Carolina (108)


Red Wildflowers of North Carolina (129)


Blue Wildflowers of North Carolina (58)


Green Wildflowers of North Carolina (36)


Other Wildflowers of North Carolina (7)



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Updated 01/18/2014