In Memoriam: Harry Levin (1919-2011).  Dr. Levin's essays on the history of plants and animals on earth, and his clear, beautiful photographs of flowers, especially the Proteaceae, have graced and illuminated our pages.  We regret to report his death. Even up to age 92, he pursued scholarship.  We are privileged to maintain these
 Essays that Could Change History.

Restaurant is genuine gem in the middle of natural paradise of Liberty County

Passion Flower Madonna painting mystery heats up; Hebrew letters 'vanish'
Florida Wildflowers
Click on flower pictures below to go to wildflower gallery

Escape to paradise in North Florida

We don't usually sell anything on this website, but our friend Eleanor is selling her cottage in Madison County. The cottage, studio/workshop, and 15 acres are for sale for $186,500.  It is located on 15 acres of wooded land with four ponds and many trails, 5 miles south of Madison, Florida. It is completely furnished and move-in ready, with central heat and air, gas stove and water heater,a well and septic tank system. The cottage has a large deck, a large screened room, a storage shed, and a boardwalk down to a dock on the water. There are two bedrooms, a loft bedroom/work area, full bath, and a spacious living/dining/kitchen area. In addition to the cottage, there is a separate large studio/workshop that overlooks one of the ponds. For photos,
For more information, contact owner

Passion Flower

Much thanks to Ron Pagano, a Florida nature enthusiast who lives in Sanford and takes pictures of wildlife and landscapes.
He hikes Florida's forests, parks and wilderness areas, coming home "at the end of the day with scratches all over my legs and bug
bites from trying to get that perfect photo."  He took this picture of Passiflora incarnata on July 28, 2011 at the Rock Springs
State Preserve in Sorrento, Florida, using a Lumix DMC-ZS7 Digital camera. ISO 80, 4.1 mm, f/5  1/400. We have placed another
of his photographs in the Gallery section.

A group of four juvenile armadillos
Dasypus novemcinctus were happily foraging in Paynes Prairie in Gainesville in June. These
strange armored creatures eventually disappeared into a hole under an oak tree where mom was probably waiting. It is thought that
a pair was imported
from South America in the mid 1800s; now 30-50 million roam the South up through Oklahoma.

Along a creek in Gadsden County, as the April sun descends, the silky camellia or Stewartia bush offers its solitary white flowers with the
deep purple stamens. Rare in Florida, this three-four inch wide flower is found on the tall shrub which ranges from Virginia to Texas. Coincidentally
this Stewartia grows on the property of Gadsden County Judge Stewart (and Becky) Parsons, who like to tell visitors of their rare flower with
the coincidental name.  Full Latin is Stewartia malacodendron.

Wisteria blooms and March weather brings stormclouds to Gainesville.
The colorful intruder from Asia, wisteria, now hangs from the trees in Gainesville, with last year's pods ready to fall.
Wisteria, a member of the pea family, is considered an invasive by many people.  It takes several years to bloom and its vines are powerful and can crush structures and trees. The flowers are fragrant.  A native version, white, blooms later in the year.

Photos copyright of the author or contributor to and may not be used without permission.

Storm clouds weave their patterns on a quiet morning at Paynes Prairie State Park, a National Natural Landmark which was Florida's first nature preserve.  More than 270 species of birds have been listed, and in this habitat prosper some of the largest alligators anywhere.  Buffalo roam the prairie.  On brighter days, visitors can hike the many trails and climb up into the 50 foot tower to witness the abundant wildlife. This walkway extends from U.S. 441 and much information is posted.

Click here to visit Florida Wildflower Gallery

By the way, if you are planning on a trip to see the natural beauty of Florida, a getaway at one of the many Orlando hotels  could be fun for the family.

The night blooming cereus above, Epiphyllum oxypetalum,  a cactus flower, is also known as the "queen of the night." This western U.S. flower has been found escaped in South Florida. It has become a favorite with gardeners.

For special page of spectacular pictures by
Tallahassee resident Gerald Grow, click here.

New Articles

Mystery heats up as Hebrew vanishes, reappears in painting

Discovery of possible hidden Hebrew commandment in painting of Virgin and Christ
adds to mystery about the bashful madonna, Jewish link to passionflower masterpiece

The Conversos, the passion flower and the religious twitter:
How the secret Jews of the Inquisition may have had links with the 'flos passionis'

New Article: Seeds of Discovery - Florida Indians and the Passionflower

Essays that could change history

Tectonic Genesis:
New Essays in Natural History
pose solution to Darwin's
'abominable mystery'

Angiosperms flowered 360 million years ago,

writes Dr. Harry Levin, challenging current
paleobotanical thought in his essays on prehistory

Famous author suggests stronger protests over
mountain destruction by coal industry

Wendell Berry speaks out on environmental 'genocide'

Sowing the earth with seeds

The right seeds hold the potential to renew our relationship to nature and to preserve a  plant diversity fast disappearing. The Salter Tree and Herb Farm in Madison is where Joanna Booth nurtures thousands of native plants, some of them endangered, and harvests the proper seeds for your garden. She takes into account cold hardiness, the moistness of the soil, and many other variables that affect productivity. But there's a lot more to it than that.  To read more, click here.

Seeds hold key to preserving a heritage

• Private donor helps save Wolf Creek Property

• Sumatra restaurant wows 'em in middle of nowhere

• See rare, flowering trees at Richard Lyons' Nursery in Homestead

A surprise reunion

Artist, 'Pepper'
the poodle are
reunited in
after 25 years

  Pepper: alive forever on canvas

This job is for the birds

Using a ladder and a homemade noose, biologist Chuck Hess climbs high to gather endangered woodpecker chicks, weighing less than an ounce. This drama unfolds 40 feet in the air. We tell the story of the red - cockaded woodpecker in the Apalachicola National Forest and how Hess and others aim to save this endangered species.

Michael E. Abrams, Publisher

Passion flower shows secrets of Kabbalah 500 years
after churchmen witnessed 'marvel'

News, Events, Maps, Numbers

See our Newspage for more activities.

•Your donations can helped match grant to rescue unique 140 acres of trout lilies and orchids at Wolf Creek

•Florida's largest surviving Torreya tree prospers near downtown Madison

•Folk artist O.L. Samuels' 'zoo' of the fantastic

•Grand Canyon, desert in winter; Charlie the Mule gets new shoes

•Map of Apalachicola Forest and Recreation Areas

•Census figures for Leon, Wakulla, Gadsden, Liberty, Franklin

Belle Glade Memories:
Photo Exhibit
ca. 1970

Our site features more than 200 original pictures of Florida wildflowers, insects, and items of interest. We follow the seasons and put new flowers up often, so please come back to see what is new. All pictures are copyrighted and permission must be obtained through the photographer. Email address is posted above on this page.

Florida expert
shines a light
on mushrooms

Bill Petty of Crawfordville, a master gardener and naturalist, answers your questions. You can reach him through his great mycology website  by clicking on his picture or the URL below.

Amazing Site for
Florida Gardeners

A beautiful, top - ranked  site for Florida flowers with tips, tricks and a treasury of  pictures for gardeners is 

Invasive Pest


Coral ardisia – Ardisia crenata
– is a plague in North Florida.
It takes over the understory of
the forest. Pull it out by the roots
and dispose of it. Look for young
plants as well. The crenated leaf
and red berry is a marker of this
plant, unfortunately sold by
some nurseries.

• Nature park beauty
• Deer licking behavior
• Heron swallows a rat

All of the movies are accompanied by music including banjo by the late
Rick Abrams, national
champion clawhammer banjo player.

Local and other ponderings

•St. Marks Lighthouse in a different light

•Madonna 'Personal Blog' steals picture of flower, story from us; How Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and newspaper escape justice on the Internet

Unforgettable encounter
with manatee, 2 calves

"I reached out and stroked her forehead and rubbed her back. I held my hand to her mouth. It filled my palm. I could feel her whiskers against my skin as she explored my hand with her lips 

–  story by Tom Southern

 Miracle on
the mountain

A religious fable about a strange moth with mysterious markings. The moth was named by Linnaeus in the year 1758,  but he did not know the story behind the story of what is called the Hebrew Character Moth.

New to the story – a Moche civilization jug handle (below) from 400 to 500 C.E. and a passion flower from an Aztec codex of the year 1552 C.E.  © Museo Larco, Lima, Peru. Also a figure of the passion of Christ discovered on a root – from a 1696 catalog of science and the miraculous by Johann Zahn, a canon of the Church and an inventor. The book contains an interesting early passionflower illustration.

Figure above
© Museo Larco,
Lima, Peru

Figure at right
from Zahn's

Speculae - Physico - Mathematico - Historicae . . .

(1696) courtesy
of NOAA Library.

Rocket scientist
Harry Levin's
world of
and passion
tell secrets
Passion flower
in van Cleve
painting spells
tale of mystery
Free desktop
created from
Gallery of
of natural
index by
and species

Rare 'Croomia' tells of hurricane,
courtroom battle 170 years ago


You can order anything from Amazon here from clothing to cameras, or consider the recommended books below if you want to learn more about the natural world and Florida's history. We also highly recommend the Nikon D40x camera.


The Florida Wildflowers pages welcome visitors from all around the world. Our pages have been up since July, 1995, and change with the seasons. We have more than 200 pictures on various pages. Our gallery is best viewed at 1280 pixels width. Pictures are copyrighted and may not be used without permission. Commercial and educational use of photographs and artwork requires permission from  Michael E. Abrams, Publisher