Prairie Ironweed (Vernonia Fasciculata)
This showy late season bloomer is found in the wild landscapes of the southern half of Minnesota in lowlands and prairies, where is blooms from July through September. Clumps of pinkish purple flowers give way to dry seeds with light brown hairs on the top to help it spread with the winds. Use Prairie Ironweed on the backside of full sun perennial gardens because it grows 3-6’ high and may need staking to help keep it erect, although pinching stems in late spring/ early summer will help keep the plant more compact. This wildflower is a host plant for the American Painted Lady caterpillar.