My village neighbor, B. J., asked, “Did you see the field of wildflowers on Queenswood?”
After we nailed down the location, I made it a point to look when we took that route on Sunday. Sure enough, a field adjacent to the country road was filled with a variety of Illinois wild flowers: Rudbeckia [gold and brown daisies], Monarda [purple bee balm], Queen Ann’s Lace [white doilie flowers also called wild carrot], day lillies, white yarrow, butterfly weed [orange], and more I could not name.
Prairie grasses give it a fluffy, ethereal look studded with color. The effect was charming. B. J. told me the owner had Pheasants Forever, a preservation group, come in and plant the field. The first two years, it was a less than impressive expanse of weeds and grass. But by year three, the flowers begin to dominate. I have noticed in the past that they burn the field, as the native Americans would do in order to maintain prairie. Burning actually helps wild flowers germinate.
If you are in the area, take a drive down Queenswood [also known as old Deacon Street], East, from Springfield Road in Groveland. The field is about one mile on the right.