IUCN threat status:

Not evaluated

Comprehensive Description

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Description

This native wildflower consists of a rosette of basal leaves and a flowering stalk about 1-3' tall. Individual basal leaves are up to 9" long and 3" across; they are oblong to ovate-oblong, crenate or smooth along their margins, and medium green. Basal leaves are glabrous to sparsely hairy on their upper surfaces, while their lower surfaces are sparsely to moderately hairy. Generally, young leaves are more hairy than older leaves. The inflorescence consists of a panicle of flowers, which develops from an erect central stalk. This stalk is fairly stout, terete, and densely covered with spreading hairs. The panicle is ellipsoid in shape, ½–1½' long, and about 1/3 as much across when it is fully extended. The branches of the panicle are ascending to spreading and usually pubescent. There is a single linear-lanceolate bract at each major fork of the branches. Depending on the size of the inflorescence, the flowers vary in abundance; they usually bloom at about the same time. Each flower is ¼" across, consisting of 5 narrow white petals, 5 green sepals that are joined together at the base, 10 stamens with white to orange-brown anthers, and 2 prominent pistils that are green and joined together. The sepals are triangular in shape and become recurved when the flowers bloom. The petals are longer than the sepals. The blooming period occurs during the late spring for 2-3 weeks. Each flower is replaced by a pair of beaked follicles; each follicle splits open along one side to release its seeds. The root system consists of a crown of fleshy fibrous roots and rhizomes. Vegetative offsets from the rhizomes are often formed. Cultivation

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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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