Jamaica Bay Wildflowers

Flower with black center and yellow petals
Black-eyed susans

Don Riepe
Used with permission

Jamaica Bay Wildflowers
Photos by Don Riepe

I have been photographing plants and wildlife around Jamaica Bay for over 30 years. This show contains some of more common and showy species that one can find while walking along the trails of the wildlife refuge and other areas of Gateway National Recreation Area. Most of these flowering plants are tolerant of sandy soil, heat, and drought conditions usually occurring in late summer. I chose a selection of plants that flower throughout the growing season from April to October. These plants provide food, cover, and nectar for many species of pollinating insects including butterflies, moths, bees, wasps, and flies as well as occasional hummingbirds.

Here's a link to Don's video discussing wildflowers and why he chose to highlight them.


About Don Riepe

Don Riepe retired in 2003 from the National Park Service where he worked as a naturalist ranger and manager of the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge in NYC. Currently, he is employed as Jamaica Bay Guardian and Director of the Northeast Chapter for the American Littoral Society. Don has written many articles on natural history subjects and his photographs have been published in many journals including Scientific American, National Wildlife, Audubon, Defenders, Underwater Naturalist, Parade and The New York Times. He has an Master of Science in Natural Resources Management from the University of New Hampshire and has taught a course in Wildlife Management at St. John’s University. A long time member of the Port Authority’s Bird Hazard Task Force, he also serves on the board of the New York City Audubon and is co-chair of the Jamaica Bay Task Force. He has no spare time.


Last updated: September 25, 2020

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