A plant of many common names: Prairie Goldenrod, Prairie Flat-top-goldenrod, Upland White Aster, Stiff Aster, Sneezewort Aster
And a plant of many different botanical names as well: Aster ptarmicoides, Aster ptarmicoides var. georgianus, Doellingeria ptarmicoides, Inula alba, Solidago asteroides, Solidago ptarmicoides, Unamia alba
Whatever you call it – upland white goldenrod looks very different from other goldenrods. Inconspicuous when first emerging, it blooms in clouds of little white aster-like flowers in late summer.
A Monarch butterfly feeds on nectar from the Rosin Weed blooms.
A bald-faced hornet nest of considerable size is nestled inside a nearby juniper bush. These valuable native pollinators can be aggressive if their home is disturbed. They are generally docile while foraging. The paper nests are used for only one season. New queens will emerge in the fall, mate and overwinter outside the nest. They will build a new nest in the spring in a different location. Old nests will be empty paper husks by mid-winter. This one can be safely removed after a few hard freezes.