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Goldenrod, Bluegrass and trumpet Vine, Indigenous Flowers of Kentucky


    Indigenous to all of Kentucky is the wildflower that features golden plumes known as the Goldenrod, scientifically named as Solidago altissima. Goldenrods are indigenous flowers Kentucky and out of the hundred species of this particular herb plant, 30 of Goldenrod species are found here in the state of Kentucky.
Goldenrods vary widely in species but they are recognized very easy because of their golden yellow inflorescence colors. The flowers of goldenrods are made of small capitula by the hundreds. Some of these capitula have auxiliary racemes and some are rather spike-like. These plants can grow from 60 cm up to 1.5 m in length with hairless and slender stems.
Before the Goldenrod, there were two other flowers that claimed the state flower title however, unofficially so it was. The unofficial state flower of Kentucky during the 1900s is the Trumpet vine. The United States War Department even made it as Kentucky’s official symbol for its militia unit. Aside from the Trumpet vine, there was also the Bluegrass.
However, during the year 1921, things change. Federation of Women’s Club in Kentucky started promoting Goldenrod as the rightful representative of America’s Bluegrass State. This was argued upon tremendously for this particular flower was already designated as California’s state flower and Trumpet vine has already made it’s mark by being the official symbol of the state’s militia.
Arguments were made and people who are promoting Goldenrod to be Kentucky’s state flower argued that this particular indigenous flowering herb plant grows almost everywhere across the state and in fact it was adopted in 1918 as an element of the Kentucky state flag.
With the support of Kentucky’s people, Goldenrod was named as the official state flower under a Senate Resolution on May 16, 1926. The Goldenrod was declared as widespread and one of the most common wildflowers found in Kentucky and In America as well.
Unfortunately, there are confusions with the variety of Goldenrod that was intended to be the official state flower. The act mentions “probably Solidago patula” naming this particular variety as the one. However, a web site of Libraries and Archives of the Kentucky Department names a different variety of Kentucky’s State Flower and that’s the Solidago gigantea. The statute or the act that declares the Goldenrod as Kentucky’s indigenous state flower did not particularly indicated the specific variety of Goldenrod to be the state’s state flower.
Because of being criticized as a very common weed widespread in most states of America, there were attempts made to replace this particular flower as Kentucky’s state flower. Bluegrass was promoted to be restored as its official state flower. It was successful and it did win in the Kentucky House but unfortunately, proponents of the bluegrass restoration were defeated in the Senate.
The threats on Goldenrod as Kentucky’s state flower didn’t stop there. Redbud and Dogwood blossoms gained popularity to replace the current state flower during the late 1940’s up to early 1950’s. Again, the House approved the redbud but failed and got defeated in the Senate in the year 1953.



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