Dalea frutescens (black dalea)—Black dalea is a member of the bean family (Fabaceae). This perennial subshrub grows in New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, and northern/central Mexico in light shade to full sun. Black dalea is fairly tolerant of drought and poor soils. The flowers are attractive to butterflies and bees.
Echinocereus reichenbachii (hedgehog cactus)—Hedgehog cactus is a member of the cactus (Cactaceae) family. This perennial is found in Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Texas, and Oklahoma. growing in dry soils and full to partial sun. Echinocereus is Greek for “hedgehog.” The fruits attract ants.
Schizachyrium scoparium (Little bluestem)—Little bluestem is a perennial grass found throughout the United states. One of the “big four” prairie grasses, little blue is also found growing in glades, open woodlands, and roadsides. This grass prefers sunny areas with low to moderate moisture. The ornamental foliage turns an attractive rusty orange color in autumn.
Mentzelia nuda (sandy lily)—Sandy lily is not a true lily, but rather a member of the loasa family (Loasaceae). This plant is found throughout the western prairie states growing in sunny, well-drained areas. It may be a biennial or perennial. Sandy lily is also known as stickleaf, because of the numerous barbed hairs that cause the leaves to become strongly attached to hair and clothing.
Eustoma grandiflorum (showy gentian)—Showy gentian is a member of the gentian (Gentianaceae) family. The plant is an annual or perennial and is found throughout the mid-western prairie states. Gentian primarily grows in moist prairies with full sun to partial shade and well-drained soils. The flower color can vary from white to pink to deep lavender.