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DescriptionThis native perennial is about 3' tall and normally erect, although it sometimes sprawls along the ground. The green central stem has fine white hairs, sometimes turning brown in response to drought. There are usually a few flowering side stems in the upper half of a large mature plant. The compound leaves consist of three leaflets that are greyish green. Each compound leaf has a short petiole with a pair of small deciduous sheaths at its base. The leaflets are 2-3½" long and less than half as wide. They are oblong or lanceolate in overall shape, but rounded at the tips rather than pointed. Their undersides have fine hooked hairs that cling to clothing or the fur of passing animals. Numerous pink flowers in an elongated panicle occur at the end of one or more of the upper stems. The flowers are about ½" across (as measured vertically), consisting of an upper and a lower petal. These petals are initially folded and keel-like, but eventually open wide, begining with the upper petal. There is a small patch of dark pink at the center of the flower, from which emerges an upwardly curved white tube containing the stigmas and pistil. There is no floral scent. Each flower occurs on a hairy red pedicel, and has a hairy greenish red calyx.The blooming period occurs during mid-summer and lasts about 3 weeks. The flat seedpods have 3 to 5 segments and are about 2½" long. Like the undersides of the leaves, they are covered with fine hooked hairs, and are distributed by passing animals. Usually, the lower side of a seedpod is more rounded than the upper side. Technically, these seedpods are called 'loments.' The root system consists of a taproot that is long, slender, and brown.