There are many species of Goldenrod around the lake. Most identification guides categorize the species by inflorescence shapes, and today we'll look at a couple of flat-topped goldenrods.
First, here's Lance-leaved Goldenrod, Solidago graminifolia, having 3 parallel-veined leaves about a quarter of an inch wide.
Next up is Slender-leaved Goldenrod, S. tennuifolia, with a single vein in an eigth inch wide leaf.
"Inventor Thomas Edison experimented with goldenrod to produce rubber, which it contains naturally. Edison created a fertilization and cultivation process to maximize the rubber content in each plant. His experiments produced a 12 foot tall plant that yielded as much as 12 percent rubber. The rubber produced through Edison's process was resilient and long lasting. The tires on the Model T given to him by his friend Henry Ford were made from goldenrod. Examples of the rubber can still be found in his laboratory, elastic and rot free after more than 50 years. However, even though Edison turned his research over to the U.S. government a year before his death, goldenrod rubber never went beyond the experimental stage."
"Goldenrod." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. 8 Sep 2009, 18:43 UTC. 8 Sep 2009 <http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Goldenrod&oldid=312633321>.