LMN – Northeast Board member Jeff Barnhill took a spin through the Upper Ouachita NWR Mollicy Unit one of our beautiful sunny days last week, and was rewarded by this incredible view.

Field View
Swamp Sunflower (Helianthus angustifolia)                        Photo by Jeff Barnhill

The Mollicy Unit of the Upper Ouachita NWR is a restoration project. This was a floodplain of the Ouachita River before it was cleared for agriculture. Although soybeans and rice were grown here for a number of years, the land was too low and flooded too readily to be great for agriculture. It is being restored to floodplain by a partnership between the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and The Conservation Fund’s ®Go Zero Fund.

The Mollicy Unit is apparently named for Mollicy Bayou that runs through it, but… that just begs the question for me. Is “Mollicy” a family name of some of the people who settled this area? If you know anything about it, please comment below.

Swamp Sunflower
Detail, Swamp Sunflower (H. angustifolia)               Photo by Jeff Barnhill

Helianthus is a genus of many species. Perhaps the best way to identify H. angustifolia is by the thread-like leaves.

And then there’s Bidens, a member of the Aster family (Asteraceae), which everyone knows you need a microscope to divide into species. So I’m not going to go there!


Bidens (Asteracea)                                                  Photo by Jeff Barnhill

Many thanks for the lovely photos, Jeff.

If you’d like to contribute to the LMN – NE blog, send me your quality photos and info, and I’ll shape them into a post.

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