Howard Marvel
Beverly Shores Environmental Restoration Group
Each year in late spring (May and June), Beverly Shores is enlivened with clusters of bright yellow-orange flowers that appear principally along Lake Front Drive. Puccoon (Lithospermum caroliniense)*, the plant that produces these flowers, likes sandy coastal conditions and full sun. It obviously thrives in Beverly Shores in the dry sand dunes just up from the Lake Michigan waterfront. (Click for more information)
Enjoy wild native puccoon in the dunes, because it is tough to grow in a garden. Its nutlets, tiny seeds covered by a smooth, hard layer (Lithospermum means stone seed), are difficult/slow to germinate. Don't try to transplant wild puccoon—puccoon's long tap root holds it in place in the sand, but renders it very difficult to transplant successfully.
* Beverly Shores has Carolina puccoon, also known as hairy puccoon. This plant is easily confused with hoary puccoon which also grows throughout the midwest. You will find hoary puccoon on dry prairies. Hoary puccoon's ½ inch flowers are about half the size and its petals are less flat compared to those of Carolina (hairy) puccoon.
Beverly Shores Environmental Restoration Group,
P.O. Box 667, Beverly Shores, IN 46301