Golden Alexanders should not be confused with Pastinaca sativa (Wild Parsnip), which is a weedy Eurasian biennial. The latter is taller, blooms later, and has more leaflets in each compound leaf. It can be particularly difficult to distinguish Golden Alexanders from Thaspium trifoliatum aureum (Yellow Meadow Parsnip), which is another native perennial plant. For the latter plant, the central flower of each umbellet has a short pedicel, the achenes are winged, and its basal leaves are simple, rather than trifoliate. Otherwise, these two species share nearly the same characteristics. Golden Alexanders is an excellent addition to a wildflower garden because it provides accessible nectar to many beneficial insects with short mouthparts during the spring and early summer when such flowers are relatively uncommon. Return
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