Help solve the mystery of the black seed pods!
The Daily Bucket is a place where we post and exchange our observations about what is happening in the natural world in our neighborhood. Birds, blooms, bugs - each note is a record that we can refer to in the future as we try to understand the patterns that are quietly unwinding around us.
Often we walk in our eastern Iowa neighborhood, and both of us prefer to walk in the morning. There are a lot of different routes we take depending on the weather. If it is windy, we stay where it is low and somewhat sheltered. If there's a pleasant breeze, we enjoy walking where it is more open. Our energy levels impact route as well, as some are less ambitious than others. (No neighborhood route is a lot more than two miles, so take that with a grain of salt.)
The other day we were feeling sturdy so we walked a little farther on a little hillier path. As we came back down the hill on a street we rarely visit, we saw these black seeds pods. Each pod might be an inch and a half to two inches long.
The plants are tall, with a woody stem of around five feet in height.
The open pod has dark gold seeds.
Do you know what the mystery seed pods are? (No, I don't know, so it isn't a quiz, it's a mystery.)
What's happening in your neighborhood? Be sure to tell us where you are.
UPDATE on the mystery plant: after seeing parat's quick comment below, I looked up BAPTISIA and it looks like that's a winner.
The False Indigo is found in most counties of Iowa, including Johnson County where we live.
This is a good description of the pods:
Fruits: inflated pods are 1 1/2” long by 1/2” in diameter with a 1/4” beak; black at maturity; seeds are about 1/8” long; fruiting begins in late May.