Hieracium caespitosum (Meadow Hawkweed)
|Also known as:||Yellow King-devil, Field Hawkweed|
|Habitat:||sun; open fields, roadsides, disturbed soil, high grade prairie|
|Bloom season:||June - August|
|Plant height:||1 to 3 feet|
|Wetland Indicator Status:||none|
|MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):|
|National distribution (click map to enlarge):|
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5 to 25 yellow dandelion-like flowers form a tight flattened cluster at the tip of a long, mostly naked stem. Individual flowers are about ¾ inch across, with dense, dark glandular hairs on the bracts and short flower stalks. The flowers stay in a broad compact cluster through the bloom period.
Leaves and stem:
Leaves are mostly basal, 2 to 10 inches long, ½ to 1¼ inch wide, oblong lance to elliptic, blunt or pointed at the tip, smooth or sparsely toothed along the edges. Sometimes 1 or 2 reduced leaves are on the lower part of the flowering stem. Leaf surface is dull, sparsely covered in fine hairs on both surfaces with longer, denser hairs along the edges and the midrib on the underside. Flowering stems are densely hairy with finer hairs at the base, becoming stiff, glandular hairy towards the flower cluster. Short, stout rhizomes and long stolons (runners) may be present.
A relative new-comer in many parts of the state, Meadow Hawkweed and other non-native weedy hawkweed species have expanded rapidly west and south the past twenty years from the Duluth area. Most prevalent in disturbed sites all of them have shown to readily invade high grade habitat.This species can be difficult to distinguish from Glaucous King-devil, Hieracium piloselloides, often growing side-by-side with it. Typically Meadow Hawkweed is more densely hairy on all parts of the plant, especially along leaf edges and lower flower stalk and its flower cluster stays more compact. Meadow Hawkweed also has stolons, where Glaucous King-devil does not. Meadow Hawkweed is also very similar to Orange Hawkweed, H. aurantiacum, differing most obviously by the flower color.
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Photos by K. Chayka and Peter M. Dziuk taken along various roadsides in Aitkin County.
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