IUCN threat status:

Not evaluated

Comprehensive Description

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Description

This is a native annual or biennial plant that is up to 3½' tall, branching occasionally in the upper half to form flowering stems. The central stem has spreading white hairs throughout its length. The leaves toward the base are 3-5" long with sizable petioles, and they are lanceolate, ovate, or oblanceolate in shape. The leaves along the upper stems are smaller in size, without petioles, and usually lanceolate. These alternate leaves are rather common along the stems, even toward the top of the plant. The lower leaves are often coarsely serrated or dentate, while the upper leaves may have a few coarse teeth toward their outer tips. Small clusters of daisy-like composite flowers occur toward the apex of the plant, each about ½–¾" across. The central disk florets are numerous, very small, and yellow; they are surrounded by 50-120 white ray florets. Both kinds of florets can be self-fertile. The flower buds often have conspicuous white hairs. The blooming period begins in early summer and continues intermittently until the fall, usually with a lull during the hot weather of late summer. A mild fragrance is sometimes detectable. The root system is fibrous and spreading. The achenes have tufts of small hairs (which they sometimes lose); they are distributed by the wind.

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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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