Wingstem Verbesina alternifolia  CC: 5 

White snakeroot Ageratina altissima CC: 3 

Tall ironweed Vernonia gigantea CC: 2 

Great blue lobelia Lobelia siphilitica CC: 3 

Blue mist flower Conoclinium coelestinum CC: 3 

Lady’s thumb Persicaria longistem CC: 0 

Jump seed Persicaria virginiana CC: 3 

Common fleabane Erigeron strigosus CC: 2 

Common chicory Cichorium intybus  CC: 0 

Red clover Trifolium praterve CC: 0 

Bird’s foot trefoil Lotus corniculates CC: 0 

 Sweet cicely Osmorhiza berteroi CC: 4 

Frost grape  Vitis vulpina CC: 3 

Amur honeysuckle Lonicera maackii CC: 0 

Catalpa Catalpa speciosa CC: 0 

Boxelder Acer negundo CC: 3 

Black raspberry Rubus occidentalis CC: 1 

American elm Ulmus americana CC: 2 

Pawpaw Asimina triloba CC: 6 

Riverbank grape Vitis riparia CC: 3 

Sycamore Platanas occidentalis CC: 7 

American hackberry Celtis occidentalis CC: 4 

Hophornbeam Ostrya virginiana CC: 5 

14.07  floristic quality assessment index 

 

Four highest CC 

Pawpaw (Asimina triloba) 

The leaves are alternate and simple, they are quite large. The bark has lenticels. Pawpaw is North American’s largest edible fruit, it taste like a combination of banana and mango. 

 

Sycamore (Platanas occidentalis) 

The leaf arrangements alternate with simple leaf complexity, the leaves look similar to that of maple leaves. The bark is very distinctive with a collage of cream, tan, and greenish colors under a flaky brown bark. Sycamores are favorites to be planted in cities due to their ability to tolerate air pollution and for the shade they provide. 

Hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana) 

Hophornbeam has cat scratch bark and is a smaller tree. It has alternate simple leaves with toothed margins. It is called hophornbeam because the fruit looks like hops for beer production.  

Wingstem (Actinomeris alternifolia) 

The leaves are alternate and toothed, the stems are winged like the name suggests. They have 10 or less yellow flower rays. It supports a wide variety of pollinators most likely giving it a higher CC value.  

 

Four lowest CC 

Black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis)  

The leaves are composed of three leaflets, and the leaves tend to have an egg like shape. The vine makes an arch from the ground and it is a light green color. They are also covered with thorns. They have aggregate fruit that contains compounds that help fight cancer, they also have three times the antioxidants of blueberries. 

Common fleabane (Erigeron philadelphicus) 

The flowers are made of up to 100 petals around a yellow center disk. They have alternate lanceolate (they get smaller going up the stem) leaves. It is considered a very dominant plant in the landscape and can even out compete non native species probably this reason contributes to its low CC value. 

Tall ironweed (Vernonia gigantea) 

The leaves are alternate and toothed. They are tall plants with small purple flowers in heads. They attract pollinators but are bitter to the taste so wildlife species avoid them. 

American elm (Ulmus Americana) 

The American Elm has alternate, simple leaves that are toothed and oval in shape. The bark has deep furrows, the furrows are springy to the touch like they are layered. The American elm was a favorite to plant in parks and cities in the late 19th century. The Dutch elm disease destroyed a lot of those. 

Part 2: 

Invasive Species 

Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) 

The leaves are opposite which is a characteristic that sets it apart. It is a smaller woody plant , with the bark having very deep furrows that make it easily recognizable. They produce red roundish fruit which are poisonous to people but not wildlife. However, people can consumed their flowers, leaves, and nectar. 

Red clover (Trifolium pratense) 

The leaves are alternate and come in leaflets of three with a white v in middle, the flowers are magenta to purple color and are arranged in a dense head. They are common in fields and meadows. It was brought to America by Europeans wanting to use it for medical purposes. In the past it was used to treat whooping cough. 

Bird’s foot trefoil (Lotus corniculates) 

The leaves are alternate and come in leaflets of five with two of those at the base of the leaf stalk. The flowers grow in umbels and are yellow. It is found in fields and roadsides. Prescribed burns increase the germination of bird’s foot trefoil, so removing this plant can be tricky especially in prairies with native plants. 

Lady’s thumb (Persicaria longistem) 

The leaves are alternate, and they are entire with a dark blotch in the center. The flowers are erect in spikes and are pink or purple in color. Considered weeds or waste spaces. They are native to Europe and were rubbed on horses as an insect repellent. They are a competitor of commercial grains, and the seeds are often found as contaminates in those grains. 

 

Part 3: 

Substrate Associated Species 

American hackberry  

The leaf arrangement is alternate with simple leaf complexity, the leaves are also slightly toothed with a rough texture. The bark looks like a melted candle making it distinctive among other trees. The hackberry is associated with limestone substrates according to Jane Forsyth’s Geobotany article.   

Hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana) 

Hophornbeam is a smaller tree that has alternate, simple leaves, with toothed margins. The bark looks like cat scratches, it does well in the understory. Hophornbeam is also associated with limestone substrates.  

I had a hard time finding other examples of substrate associated species in my plot, however it is reasonable to conclude with the examples I did find in combination with the history of Delawanda park and its location that the substrate composition is of greater limestone content. Delawanda is located in the glaciated region of Ohio and was subjected to the erosion events that lead to the development of the limestone substrate. Also I want to note that I did not find any species that prefer sandstone substrates so even though there is a lack of limestone species that absent of sandstone species is additional factor that leads to the conclusion that Delawanda Park is located on limestone substrate.