This is a new species I have never encountered on the Llano Estacado – Haploesthes Greggii, or more commonly know as False Broomweed. This native evergreen is a subshrub with dark green foliage and is aromatic. It is unpalatable to wildlife and livestock. It is found on clay-loam soils that have been mechanically or chemically disturbed.
Yesterday, in Nazareth, Texas at the annual German Festival, I met Dr. Meredith McLain, professor Emeritus of German from Texas Tech. She mentioned Karl May, a writer who wrote books about the Llano Estacado in the late 1800s.
Here is an excerpt translated by McLain from one of May’s books. Read how May conjured up an alluring experience of mystical proportions on the Llano Estacado:
“A nocturnal ride across the desert which stretches itself out in the moonlight! How much I wish my dear readers could feel the majestic sensations which allow the human heart to swell higher and higher. However, the heart must be free from worry and from all that could oppress and constrain it…. If only someone could give me a quill from which the right words would flow to describe the impression which such a nocturnal desert ride brings forth from a devout human heart! “(May, 1894)