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This is one of the showier Tick Trefoils because of the plentiful flowers, assuming it isn't marred by insects and disease. Showy Tick Trefoil is more attractive when it occurs in colonies, rather than as isolated plants. Distinguishing the different Desmodium spp. is rather difficult. Important features to consider are the number of segments and shape of the loments, and the size and structure of the compound leaves. Showy Tick Trefoil can be distinguished from Desmodium illinoense (Illinois Tick Trefoil) by examining the base of the compound leaves. The leaf-stem (primary petiole) connecting the compound leaf to the stem is much shorter in the former species than the latter species. Similarly, the leafy bracts at the base of the leaf-stem are smaller and more deciduous in the former species than the latter species. Return


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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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