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Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Plants To See While Paddling

a group of people kayaking
Sweet smelling swamp lilys, creepy Spanish moss, prehistoric air plants and stumpy cypress knees — figuring them out is part of the mystery and fun when you paddle with Jupiter Outdoor Center on the Wild and Scenic Loxahatchee River.
Check out these few of nature’s attractions before your trip. Your paddling pals will be impressed with your knowledge.
SWAMP LILY
a green plant in a garden
Sweet smelling and elegant, swamp lilies look like starbursts along the banks of the Lox.
The plants, which grow up to three feet tall, love the full sun and growing in wet soil.
While smelling and looking good is fine, it has its downside.
Insects like grasshoppers and flies love to snack on swamp lillies.
AIR PLANT
a tree in a forest
Air plants are nature’s hitch hikers, hooking on to other plants for a ride.
But they actually are pretty good guests.
After all, they don’t ask their host for much.
They don’t require soil to grow.
Air plants are not parasites like the strangling fig tree.
They don’t require food from their host.
Air plants feed themselves by collecting moisture and food fibers from the air.
SPANISH MOSS
a tree in a forest
Creepy, droopy and mysterious, paddling under Spanish moss is like hearing the scary music in a horror movie.
Also known as grey beard and tree hair, the springy greenish stuff loves hanging over the branches of the live oaks and bald cypress trees common along the Lox River.
Clumps of Spanish moss are hotels for biodiversity.
Insects, three species of bats, frogs, lizards, snakes and more live inside the stuff.
Birds like yellow-throated warblers and northern parulas make their nests during the spring and summer.
And there is one species of spider that can only be found living in Spanish moss.
CYPRESS KNEES
a tree next to a body of water
Cypress knees — what do they do all day?
Scientists are stumped.
Some calculate the knobby nubs that grow around the base of the trees serve as anchors to keep the tree in place. After all, take a look around the Lox. There’s many cypress trees 50 feet high and higher.
Collecting oxygen is the reason the the knees, say other scientists.
Nah, scoff more sceintists. The knees give the root system access to air.
And why are they called knees?
Scientists think they got this one.
The real name for the gadgets is pneumatophores.
Knees, for short.
You know, like the short cut for Bartholomew.
Bart.
WATER LILY 
a close up of a pond of water
About the size of tennis balls, these flowers grow in clumps of lily pads on the surface of the Lox River, looking like yellow dandelions on your front lawn.
The good news is that water lilies leaves keep light from the water. That helps to control algae growth.
The bad news is if they cover too much of the surface they can actually prevent oxygenation.
This can suffocate fish and other plants.
Contact the local leader in Outdoor Adventure — Go to Jupiter Outdoor Center at jupiteroutdoorcenter.com

Check out Jupiter Outdoor Center’s previous blogs:

Things To Do In Jupiter : 3 Outdoor Yoga Spots

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Fun Places To Go Fishing

Things To Do in Jupiter: Don’t Feed the Alligators!

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Ways to Get Out on the Water

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Wildlife Sightings

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Ways to Double Up Your Wildlife Fun

Things To Do in Jupiter: A 6-Pack of Water Adventure Tours 

Things To Do in Jupiter: Take a Tour with Capt. Art @ L0ve St. Outdoor Center

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Fun Family Adventures

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Essentials for Your Tour on Loxahatchee River

Things To Do In Jupiter: 5 Ways To Go Back in Time

Things To Do in Jupiter: Take the Trapper Nelson Challenge

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Great Birdwatching Spots

Things To Do in Jupiter:  5 Fantastic Spots for a Brownbag Lunch

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Eco-tourism Adventures

Things To Do in Jupiter: 5 Great First Dates