Flowers (Dry to Medium Soil)

These wildflowers are well suited to Manitoba’s dry and medium moisture prairies and woodlands. Some are more versatile and do well in moist habitats, too.

Dry soils are very well drained and usually composed of nutrient-poor sand, gravel or rock with some loam. Drought-like conditions are common, so vegetation is sparse or patchy and mostly short to mid-height.

Medium soils range from well-drained to somewhat poorly drained and may consist of sandy loam or clay with a thick, dark, nutrient-rich upper layer. Vegetation is dense and ranges from low (ground cover) to tall (>5 feet).

Yellow stargrass

Ranked S3, or vulnerable, in Manitoba.

Two-flowered cynthia

A rare find in Manitoba’s tall grass prairie/aspen parkland.

Bastard toadflax, pale comandra

This species can open up dense patches of grass, allowing other native species to take hold.

Hairy Golden-aster

Long, white hairs give this plant a grayish appearance.


Three species of insects – a cellophane bee, a flea beetle and an aphid- are exclusive to alumroots.

Canada goldenrod

What’s really neat about this goldenrod is its pin-wheel leaf arrangement.

Blue-eyed grass

This miniature member of the iris family is a joy to see in spring-blooming prairies.

Dotted Blazingstar

One of my favourite dry prairie plants!

Purple Coneflower

Bold and beautiful, purple coneflower has a high tolerance for dry conditions.

Canadian lousewort

This hemi-parasite creates micro habitats where less-competitive forbs can thrive.

Dwarf Milkweed

Dwarf milkweed plays host to monarch caterpillars and its flowers are visited by a variety of insects.

Cooper’s Milkvetch

Striking clusters of large inflated pods are a beautiful pale yellow blushed with red. Ranked S1, critically imperilled, in Manitoba.

Cutleaf Anemone

Striking deep pink flowers brighten the June landscape, turning to cute balls of dense fluff by mid-summer.

Stiff Goldenrod

Stiff goldenrod is one of the relatively few prairie plants that seems to attract more attention when it’s not flowering.

Downy Wood Violet

Makes a great ground cover for rich, dry to medium woods.

Canada Mayflower

Familiarity breeds comfort with this common plant of forest floors.

Western Silvery Aster

The magenta-coloured flowers are the most beautiful of all the asters.

Many-flowered Aster

The flowers provide a late-season nectar source for a wide range of insects.

Giant Hyssop

Plants have a sweet black licorice scent and flavour and make wonderful tea and medicine.

Spreading Dogbane

The long, reddish brown stem fibers make strong cordage.

Evening Primrose

Large yellow flowers with heart-shaped petals and a wonderful fruity aroma.

Smooth Aster

Smooth aster brings welcomed colour and an important source of pollen and nectar to the late summer/fall landscape.

Purple Prairie Clover

Incredibly attractive flowers and aromatic leaves.

White Prairie Clover

Some species of cellophane bee are specific to white prairie clover and, in turn, are parasitized by cuckoo bees.


Continues flowering throughout the summer.

White Upland Goldenrod

My favourite goldenrod! White flowers with creamy centers are arranged in flat-topped clusters.

Canada Hawkweed

I like this plant because of its unique leaves, which have widely-spaced teeth or tooth-like projections along the edges and get characteristically smaller towards the top of the stem.

Black-Eyed Susan

Black-eyed susans are the primary nectar food plant for the endangered Powesheik skipperling.

Wild Bergamot

Excellent for flavouring all kinds of foods and highly medicinal, too.


Feathery leaves and a wonderful menthol-like scent make this plant very attractive.

Tall Cinquefoil

Stately, mid-sized plants with unique cream-coloured flowers.

Heliopsis, Ox-Eye

Bright yellow flowers seem to emit their own light.

Pink-Flowered Onion

The star-like flowers are just as flavourful as the precious bulbs.

Missouri Goldenrod

A typically low-stature goldenrod of dry prairies and gravel ridges.

Shrubby Evening Primrose

A beautiful addition to dry prairie sites.

Long-Headed Coneflower

Plants are quick to develop dense, fibrous root systems and often flower the first year.

Beautiful Sunflower

Short-stature sunflowers with a chocolatey scent.

Blanket Flower, Gaillardia

These simple flowers are definitely head-turners, attracting the attention of both people and a range of bees.

Pasture Sage

This is my favorite Manitoba sage. The soft, feathery, dusty green leaves are very unique and attractive.

Prairie Sage

Plants are beautifully scented and hold a special place in many Indigenous cultures.