Unknown plant

tucker_sp(Z4 MN)July 1, 2014

Hi - I would like to know if anyone can ID this plant - it was found growing on the beach (Lake Michigan) in Berrien Co., MI.

Thanks, Tucker

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lycopus(z5 NY)

Cakile edentula

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 3:52PM
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I'd have to question what you're doing-pulling out plants, the identity of which you are unaware. This native plant belongs where you saw it growing, not, for example, slowly dieing in a hot car on the way back to MN. Or should everybody follow your lead and pull plants out first, ask questions later? If I've somehow misconstrued what's going on here, my apologies. But I do see plants which have been pulled out of the ground, which plants are dune specialists, not especially abundant, and ill-suited for all but their specialized environment.


    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 9:39AM
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tucker_sp(Z4 MN)

To wisconsitom: I suppose you may jump to whatever conclusions you like. Just to make things clear, though, the picture was sent to me by a relative who lives in that part of Michigan. She pulled the plants out to get a look at the root structure in case that would help in identification. They were part of an apparent colony of dozens of individuals, and were replanted after they were photographed. She is a native of the Indiana Dunes area and an avid supporter of local conservation efforts. She was concerned that they might be something invasive that should not be there, and asked me to help with the ID, because of my interest in botany, among other things. If this makes you feel a little less self-righteous, I've done my job.


    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 3:13PM
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Well well, well, self-righteous, eh? I provided for the possibility that my initial reaction was wrong within my post. So, you ignored that part because it would interfere with your flaming retort. What else is new?

Having been involved with native restorations of one kind or another for decades now, I can't recall even once thinking that pulling a plant out of the ground to get a better look at its roots-without a clue as to what the plant was-ever occured to me. That's a good one!

And of course, your friend checked back periodically to ascertain that this operation was successful....the plants lived through their ordeal?


    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 8:11AM
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Jeepers creepers! I hate when I get one of those "well meaning" rap on the knuckles with a ruler types of answers.

Such comments are deliberately punitive & always come across as intended to shame.

From where I sit it is wisconsitom who is being self righteous here. Is a defensive response really a surprise? I would have done the same. We are not the plant police, we are here to share information & ask questions, not to discipline one another.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2014 at 2:10AM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I have been googling and drinking coffee in AC wondering about beaches on the Great Lakes this morning . I don't really know this plant. I sit Inland down south on my computer.It does appear that this woman is trying to do her homework. There are more than one Sea Rocket. One C. edentula is native and One a. maritima is an invasive that is replacing the native. . They look a great deal alike. I think the issue is to be definite about which of the two it is. I think the woman who uprooted the plants has her heart in the right place and if it is the invasive one, she will be the person who is the early identifier for this beach habitat. Taking a herbarium specimen is appropriate if the cause is good. She is acting as a protector. She is the eyes on the ground, acting on her assumptions,. and has obviously has some skin in the game of this habitat and ownership of the process. By the way,all the Cakiles are edible. Young shoots are the best. I did get differing info on the annual/ perennial question. Seems like that might be a question of how cold that beach is come winter. The C. edentula is an invasive in Japan and Australia and other regions of the world. It is a rare threatened plant in Illinois. The beaches are mostly factories and city there.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2014 at 9:50AM
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