About the site

  1. Wildflowers
  2. Names, origin, and rarity
  3. Pictures
  4. References
  5. Field guides
  6. Online references
  7. Copyright notice and terms of use
  8. About the author
  9. Thanks

For purposes of this site wildflowers are flowering plants, other than trees, growing outside of cultivation.  All but a few pictures were taken in Delaware; the others are of plants that have been found in Delaware.  Consulting The Flora of Delaware, I get the numbers below.  About one-third of the total are represented on this site.

1,422 Dicotyledons

1,489Total "wildflowers"

Names, origin and rarity
Scientific and common names shown on this site are taken from The Flora of Delaware.  Also from that source, and from the rare plant list, is species origin and rarity information as defined below.
Native "A species that occurred in Delaware prior to European settlement, or has migrated into the state independent of human activity."

The terms below are applied to native plants:
Common State ranked S4 or S5; secure under present conditions.
Uncommon "state ranked as S3, 21 - 50 known populations ... not a high priority for conservation at this time"
Rare Marked "Conservation Conern" in The Flora of Delaware.  Ranked as S1 or S2, 1 - 20 known populations.
Globally rare Vulnerable to extinction; global rank G1, G2, or G3.
Historical "not collected or reported for 15 or more years"
Extirpated "no longer exists in Delaware"; its habitat is gone
Adventive "native to North America, but not to Delaware"
Alien "not native to North America"
Invasive Aggressive alien or adventive species that displace native vegetation.
Introduced These are non-native plants that are not widely established, but may be found growing apparently uncultivated.  These species are not listed in The Flora of Delaware.
Uncertain Status uncertain, or of uncertain nativity.

The pictures
Except where labelled differently, these pictures were taken at various locations in New Castle County, Delaware.  Many were taken at Delaware state parks and at Middle Run Valley Natural Area.

All of the pictures on this website were taken with digital cameras. Currently, I'm using a Nikon D750 and an iPhone 6. Other cameras represented are the Nikon D90, D70, Coolpix 5000, S4, 2500, 990, and 900s; the iPhone 5; there may still be a photo or two from the Epson PhotoPC 500.

On the computer I use Lightroom, Photoshop, and Zerene Stacker to work with images, and TextMate to maintain the site.


The Flora of Delaware, an Annotated Checklist
McAvoy, W., and K. Bennett
Delaware Natural Heritage Program, 2001
If you would like a copy, here is the order form.
There is also an online flora database, see below.

Herbaceous Plants of Maryland
Melvin L. Brown and Russell G. Brown
University of Maryland, 1984

Woody Plants of Maryland
Russell G. Brown and Melvin L. Brown
University of Maryland, 1972

Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada
Henry A. Gleason & Arthur Cronquist
The New York Botanical Garden, 1991

Illustrated Companion to Gleason and Cronquist's Manual
Noel H. Holmgren
The New York Botanical Garden, 1998

Plant Identification Terminology: An Illustrated Glossary
James G. Harris and Melinda Woolf Harris
Spring Lake Publishing, 2001

Wild Flowers of the United States (The Northeastern States)
Harold William Rickett
The New York Botanical Garden, 1966

Field guides

Newcomb's Wildflower Guide
Lawrence Newcomb
Little, Brown and Company, 1977

National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Wildflowers
William A. Niering and Nancy C. Olmstead
Alfred A. Knopf, 1995

Wildflowers of Delaware and the Eastern Shore
Claude E. Phillips
Delaware Nature Education Society, 1978

National Audobon Society Field Guide to North American Wildflowers (Eastern Region)
William A. Niering and Nancy C. Olmstead
Alfred A Knopf, 1979

A Field Guide to Wildflowers (Northeastern and North-central North America)
Roger Tory Peterson and Margaret McKenny
Houghton Mifflin Company, 1968

Wildflowers in the Field and Forest
Steven Clemants and Carol Gracie
Oxford University Press, 2006

Online references

The Flora of Delaware Online Database
William A. McAvoy
Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control

The USDA PLANTS database
United States Department of Agriculture

Flora of the Carolinas, Virginia, and Georgia, and Surrounding Areas
Alan S. Weakley
The University of North Carolina Herbarium


Copyright Notice
All pictures and text on this web site (www.delawarewildfowers.org) are copyright David G. Smith.  (Contact information below.)  No part of the site is in the public domain.

Terms of use...

About the author
My family is from Virginia and Tennessee, and I was born in Kentucky, but Delaware's been home most of my life.  I have no training in botany or photography; to support my hobby I am a computer programmer.

Here I am with a Cypripedium acaule.

You can contact me at

Thanks to Kay Lancaster, Rufino Osorio, Bill McAvoy, Karen Bennett, Keith Clancy, and members of the GARDENS e-mail list. 

Delaware Wildflowers main page