What’s in Bloom
Goldenrain Tree (Koelreutaria paniculata)
Native to China, Japan, and Korea, the Goldenrain tree was first introduced to this country in 1763. It is one of only a few summer-flowering trees hardy to this region. Exhibiting yellow blooms in the summer, the species also has a spectacular fall color, turning a brilliant orange. Because of its two seasons of interest as well as its tolerance to drought, the Goldenrain Tree is becoming more popular for use in urban areas. The Goldenrain Trees can currently be seen flowering in Chinatown Park as well as the Urban Arboretum.
Helen’s Flower (Helenium ‘Helbro’ (Mardi Gras))
Originally native to the Southern and Eastern United states, Helen’s Flower, also called “Sneezeweed,” is often planted as a garden perennial because of its yellow and orange flowers which bloom for upwards of six to eight weeks. Helen’s Flower is a close relative of both Sunflowers (Helianthus) and Oxeye (Heliopsis), and is often confused with both because of similar names and flower structures. Helen’s flower can be easily distinguished by the fact that its flower petals are ray shaped, being broadest at the tip. Helen’s Flower is currently flowering in the Fort Point Channel Parks.
Marsh Blazing Star (Liatris spicata ‘Floristan White’ and ‘Kobald’)
A species often found growing in moist or wet meadows across the eastern United States, Marsh Blazing Star is a summer flowering perennial growing 2-4’ in height (the varieties on the Greenway are more compact and generally do not grow taller than 3’). The species generally flowers a pink to purple color, but can occasionally flower white as well. On the Greenway, both white and pink-flowering varieties are planted (‘Floristan White’, and ‘Kobald’, respectively). Marsh Blazing Star can currently be seen flowering across the Wharf District Parks.