Plants of Dyer Mill Trail
Situated on 240 acres, the Dyer Mill trail is located in Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park in Franklin County, Ohio. Historically, the property was owned by Samuel Dyer who built the first flour mill in the area in the early 1800s (Franklin County). This portion of the park is home to a diverse number of different habitat and ecosystem types, from prairie with many different grasses and wildflowers to different forest types, such as an upland wet-mesic forest dominated by black walnut and pin oak in the overstory and eastern redbud and amur honeysuckle in the understory, an older mixed hardwood mesic forest, and a flood plain forest. The land was most likely used for agriculture prior to becoming part of the park judging by the old fence rows beside the prairie areas and the younger forested areas. Here are just a few examples of the trees, shrubs and fruiting plants found that can be found along the trail.
common name: black walnut scientific name: Juglans nigra
Black walnuts can be consumed by humans and are an important food source for wildlife. The outer husks are and have been used as a dye and scent mask for animal traps by boiling them in water.
common name: pin oak scientific name: Quercus palustris
Oaks are known to support many different species of caterpillars which makes oaks very important to the caterpillars and the birds that rely on them for food.
common name: Amur honeysuckle scientific name: Lonicera maackii
This invasive shrub was historically planted along roadsides to help prevent erosion due to its ability to grow fast and establish itself just about anywhere (link). These abilities are what make it such a big problem nowadays, from out-competing native shrubs to becoming ecological traps for cardinals in relation to nest survival rates. (link)
common name: eastern wahoo scientific name: Euonymus atropurpureus
Native Americans used the bark to make a “purgative” . The berries which turn a reddish/pinkish color later in the fall should not be eaten as they are poison according to the North Carolina Garden extension.
common name: common milkweed scientific name: Asclepias syriaca
common name: pokeweed scientific name: Phytolacca americana
common name: poison ivy scientific name: Rhus radicans