Friday, December 9, 2016

Flower Friday: Smallfruit beggarticks

Photo by Grace Howell

Smallfruit beggarticks (Bidens mitis)
Click on terms for botanical definitions.

Smallfruit beggarticks is an annual herbaceous wildflower. Its conspicuous blooms consist of eight bright yellow ray florets surrounding many yellow disk florets. Leaves are oppositely arranged and variable in shape, but are usually lanceolate. Margins may be toothed or lobed. Stems are thin, branched and weak, often bending under the weight of the flower. Fruits are achenes. Seeds are small and dark with many fine hairs, allowing them to stick to clothing, fur or feathers to be carried to a new area.

Smallfruit beggarticks typically blooms late spring through late fall, but can bloom year-round. It occurs in wet prairies and along fresh and brackish marsh edges. The flowers attract many bees and butterflies and are an important source of nectar.

Family: Asteraceae (Aster, daisy or composite family)
Native range: Nearly throughout Florida, except extreme southern counties
Click here to see where smallfruit beggarticks occurs naturally.
Hardiness: Zone 8a-10
Soil: Moist to wet
Exposure: Full sun to partial shade
Growth habit: 2-2½’ tall  
Propagation: Seed
Garden tips: Smallfruit beggarticks are best suited for wetland restoration projects.

Plants are occasionally available from nurseries that specialize in Florida native plants. Visit www.plantrealflorida.org to find a nursery in your area. Seeds are available from the Florida Wildflower Seed Cooperative.

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