The summer growing season is in full swing and many plants are up out of the ground and in full bloom. Most of the time gardeners know the names of those blooms but occasionally they run across a stray poesy they cannot identify.
Some would say what does the name matter if it is thriving and looks good in the landscape. If it is thriving that is probably a decent answer to not knowing the name. On the other hand, if it's beautiful blooms begin to wane and its leaves get a little brown on the edges the gardener might like to know what it is so they can care for it properly. For example, how much water or sunshine does it require, when should it be pruned and how much garden space does it require. This is information that can only enhance the plant's performance.
Back in the old days before technology entered every facet of our lives we would have had to research the flower in books or ask others who were more knowledgeable about flowers in our community. Today there are apps we can download to our phone that will identify most flowers found in the landscape. Usually one just needs to take a photo of their plant and the app will search a data base and most often come up with a name and some even offer care information.
Nothing is 100% and these apps do occasionally fail in their quest. Lots of times it's due to the gardener taking a bad photo such as not getting a picture of a healthy plant with all of its leaves and flowers intact. Sometimes it's due to a plant being bred into an unusual color, height or other variation that will throw the apps research off of its game. So, if the app doesn't work what is a gardener to do?
Here is where one might have to go back to the "old school" and do some research but they should go armed with some data they collect about their plant. They should check out the leaves of the plant and take note of their shape, the pattern of growth from the stem and the vein pattern. Taking a good look at the flower it produces and noting the number of petals, the color and shape of the bloom is another requirement. Measuring the flower itself, the leaves and the height of the entire plant will also be helpful. The time of year if first comes out of the ground, when leaves appear and when it flowers is important information as well. Finally noting whether it likes the sun or the shade can be a huge clue in doing the research.
Once the information is collected an online plant dictionary could be consulted to see if any the information that has been put together can solve the mystery. As a last or maybe as a first resort posting a photo of the flower online to see if anyone can help identify it might be a good bet - with technology the wide world community could be the best advisor.