This is a pretty cool phenomemon that not too many people have seen because 1. you have to be out and about in early winter, 2. you have to have a lot of herbaceous perennials, 3. just the right weather conditions, basically a very frosty night after milder weather, and 4. you have to be somewhere with all of these things together. Without going into a lot of detail, basically when root pressure continues to push water up a stem which has been cut or ruptured by freezing, the water can form elaborate ribbons of ice as it freezes in cold air. And hey, they sort of look like flowers. Obviously the ground temperature has not yet reached winter temperatures. At any rate some of these formations are pretty cool and have caught the imagination of a geologist here in the upper midwest. More pictures and more information here via Jim Carter.