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This is an attractive plant because of the fuzzy leaves; the composite flowers are an additional bonus. Yellow Crownbeard, along with other members of the genus, has been oddly neglected in many prairie field guides, even though it clearly occurs in tallgrass prairies. Nor is it easy to obtain seed or plants from nursuries that specialize in native wildflowers, possibly because of the more southern distribution of this species. The only other member of this genus that occurs in prairies in Illinois, Verbesina alternifolia (Wingstem), is a taller plant that blooms later. It has long coarse leaves that are sandpapery, rather than soft and fuzzy, and its ray florets droop around the central cone of each flower. Return

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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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