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The Buttonbush ( Cephalanthus occidentalis) is an unusual shrub with curious white pincushion flowers. It is found in the wild all over the United States, usually in swamps and moist areas.  Growing up in rural Alabama, I remember seeing it in the woods behind our house.  It doesn't garner much attention until the blooms make their appearance.  Sources vary on the size of the plant. In the wild, it can get to 20 feet but in gardens, most likely under 12 ft. In my garden, it is about 4 feet tall after five years in the ground. It is located along the back fence in an area that doesn't get much supplemental water although I am working on the area and watering more often this year. The flowers have a slight honey-like fragrance. Bees love this plant! Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy

Cullman County ammendment to develop protected wilderness - vote no!

Friend and fellow blogger Peggy Hill passed this along to me to share. Please take a look at her blog post "The Fate of This Land May Be in Your Hands".

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. Sounds like a very worthy cause Philip. I think people forget the value of land left undeveloped for future generations. It looks beautiful.

  2. I hope this stunning area remains protected. Why do some people only see natural areas in terms of how much money can be made from it? Wish I could vote on this but I live in NC.

  3. Hidden language is so horrible and uninformed voters should stay home! I pray Cullman County makes the right decision and I'm glad there are folks like Peggy who are standing for keeping this land safe.

  4. Thank you so much for posting about this important issue.


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