Today I saw the first Cup Plant (Silphium perfoliatum) blooms of summer, 2012. It is actually the first Cup Plant I ever planted, at a house I was residing at in 2004.

Cup Plant is special: a statuesque beauty and a habitat plant. The flowers are reminiscent of tiny sunflowers that form seeds birds love to eat. But this native plant has evolved a unique, perhaps one of a kind habitat feature: the apex on the stem where the leaves meet form a true “cup” that collects water after a rain shower. Cup plant’s dual action as a bird attracting plant involves birds drinking rain water out of the “cups.” Nature is astonishing; don’t miss out.