Wildflowers bring beauty to W.Va.

The largest flower garden in Randolph County? West Virginia?

For wildflower buffs, the 5-mile bed of chicory in the median up Kelly Mountain, to Bowden, may be the largest. (Unless you count the miles and miles of yellow clover along limestone berms of West Virginia.)

Like its dandelion cousin, the super abundance of this blue beauty is often underappreciated, and taken for granted, until it isn’t there.

Chicory has long been used as a coffee substitute, or a caffeine free additive. It fully opens mid-morning sun and closes early afternoon when the sun is too bright.

You have to pull over or slow down a bit, during subdued light, to fully appreciate it.

If you are out for a drive, go a bit farther and hang a right at the top of the mountain toward Whitmer down to Job, and see a mile of scarlet red road banks of the beautiful Oswego Tea, now in full bloom.

Ken Auvil