GOLDENROD (Solidago). — Many species occur in the state. The goldenrods are very common in the central section, but are very unreliable yielders. They secrete well in some parts of the state but not in others — secretion being apparently influenced by the type of soil. A heavy, golden-colored honey, which should be well ripened.
JAMAICA DOGWOOD (Ichthymenthia piscipula). — Sometimes called sumac, but it belongs to the pulse family, and is not at all related to the genus Rhus. The bark is very poisonous, and if macerated and thrown into streams and ponds it will stupefy fish. It blooms in spring, and the white flowers are very abundant nectar-producers. Bees swarm on the bloom. The peculiar odor of the nectar can be detected in the hives. The honey is superior to that of mangrove and does not granulate. This tree is very common on the Keys.
MANGROVE, BLACK (Avicennia nitida). — An evergreen shrub or tree growing in sandy soil overflowed by the tide. Abundant along the lower coast and on the Keys. Up to 1895, when it was killed to the ground by frost, it yielded wonderful crops of honey. Since the “big freeze” it has been a poor honey plant on the Peninsula, but it is now becoming valuable again. It blooms from June to August on the Peninsula; on the Keys, from April to July. The honey is light and thin and often has a brackish taste. On the Keys and Thousand Islands it has always been productive, as it was not destroyed by the freeze of 1895.
MEXICAN CLOVER (Richardia scabra). — The name is a misnomer as it is not a clover. There are two species, known as the high bush and the low bush. The former is the better honey plant. Grows along roadways and in old fields. The honey is light amber and has a mild flavor.
ORANGE (Citrus Aurantium). — The waxy white blossoms open from the middle of February to the middle of March, the date varying with the weather. They furnish a good surplus in the middle and southern portions of the state. The honey is light in color, of heavy body, and has a fine flavor. As many other plants are in bloom during the orange flow, pure orange honey is hard to get.
SCRUB PALMETTO (Sabal megacarpa). — A low shrub with long crooked stems, growing in the flatwoods and on the edges of heavy damp hammocks. The small, stalkless white flowers are borne in a large many-branched spike. The honey is of good grade.
CABBAGE PALMETTO (Sabal Palmetto). — A large tree, widely distributed in the southern two-thirds of the state. The stalkless white flowers are produced in great profusion in branched spikes. It blooms in July or August, and nectar secretion is greatly influenced by the weather. Rain will cause the flowers to blight. The honey is of good grade, but foams and ferments if taken off unripe. Even after it is sealed it will often foam as though fermenting.
SAW PALMETTO (Serenoa serrulata). — Closely resembles scrub palmetto, but has a wider distribution. Common on dry ground in the Gulf Coast region. It blooms from April to May. The honey is of good quality even though taken off before it is sealed. It is said by some to be the best honey in the state.
PENNYROYAL (Satureja rigida). — A square-stemmed plant belonging to the mint family, growing on pine lands in the southern part of the state. It blooms from December to March. Weather conditions make the amount of surplus uncertain, but it is good for building up in early spring. The honey is light in color and good in quality.
POISONWOOD (Rhus Metopium). — A small tree, blooming in February and March. An excellent source of nectar. The sap is very poisonous to the touch. It has been confused with manchineel, but the two trees belong to entirely different families.