OHC Summer Series #11: Queen Anne’s Lace-Year-Long Study

Queen Annes Lace button

Summer Series #11
Year-Long Study: Queen Anne’s Lace

“If we look straight into the large flower-cluster, we can see that each component cluster, or umbellet, seems to have its own share in making the larger pattern; the outside blossoms of the outside clusters have the outside petals larger, thus forming a beautiful border.”
Handbook of Nature Study, page 543.

Train Your Senses

  • Sight: How are the blossoms arranged? What is its shape? Are there insects on the flower?
  • Smell: Does the flower have a scent? How about the leaves?
  • Touch: Is the stem smooth or rough? How does the flower umbel feel?

Inside Preparation Work:
Read in the Handbook of Nature Study pages 542 to 545 (Lesson 148). Pay special attention to the suggestions in Lesson 148, perhaps choosing a few of the observations to complete when observing your Queen Anne’s Lace. Keep track of the location of your Queen Anne’s Lace so you can revisit it during the seasons to come, observing the changes in this plant over a year’s time.

Outdoor Hour Time:
Spend 15 minutes outdoors this week in your own backyard or a near-by park. The subject of this challenge is Queen Anne’s Lace but keep your eye out for any wildflowers you may observe during your outdoor time. Keep in mind your suggested observation ideas as you enjoy your time outside together. Remember to use your senses to observe your wildflowers.

Follow-Up Activities:
Discuss what you observed during your outdoor time. Try to help your children remember what they discovered using all their senses. This can be just a few words or a complete account of their thoughts. Use the notebook page included with the Summer Series ebook to record a sketch and your observations or use a blank notebook of your own. As part of a year-long study of Queen Anne’s Lace, make sure to file your notebook page away for future reference.

Here is also a notebook page that Jimmie made that you may like to use: Queen Anne’s Lace Notebook page. Here is a link to an entry on my blog that I made in the past about Queen Anne’s Lace: Queen Anne’s Lace.

Suggested Nature Journal Activities:

  • Wildflowers are wonderful subjects for a watercolor drawing. Try using watercolor colored pencils to sketch some Queen Anne’s Lace or any wildflower into your nature journal.
  • Using the notebook page in the Summer Series ebook record any observations your child has from their outdoor time.
  • Take a photograph of your wildflower and include it in your nature journal.
  • You can also use any notebook pages from the sidebar of my blog.

If you would like all the Summer Series Challenges in one place, I have an ebook gathered for you to purchase for your convenience. Here is a link to a complete description:
Summer Series of Outdoor Hour Challenges
Summer 2010 Nature Study Final

Ultimate Ebook Library @handbookofnaturestudy


  1. I love Queen Anne’s Lace! It’s so delicate and pretty. I was looking for some information on Queen Anne’s Lace on the Internet one time (with one of my daughters for a Language Arts writing project) and found a site called World Carrot Museum (http://www.carrotmuseum.co.uk/). Of course, I wondered what in the world Queen Anne’s Lace has to do with carrots, and I found that it’s part of the carrot family. The root is edible as well, but you have to get it before it becomes too tough to eat. I’ve never tried it myself, because we have no Queen Anne’s Lace growing near our house that I have seen.

  2. I have never given a second of thought to these white flowers lining our highways! Just white plants! Oh for the Joy of seeing and learning the details! Love these now!!!!

  3. This study brought back wonderful childhood memories. Thinking of placing our one plant in water with food coloring to see if it will turn like I remember! We just found one white one. All the others were past prime. But we did see sweeps of them on our mountain trip last weekend. Wonderful, long study! Thank you.

  4. That was fun-we’re looking forward to doing this study during the seasons. We were able to see many still in full bloom and others already seeded and ready to “blow”…

    Thanks for these challenges-they are neat.

  5. Catching up – only one more for us to finish! Thanks Barb!

  6. I would include a warning about the differences between Queen Anne’s Lace and Giant Hogweed. The second is becoming very prevalent and can look similar in the early stages. It can cause burns and blindness if the fluid gets on skin, so wouldn’t want kids running up to touch every plant they see white flat white flower clusters on a plant!

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