Galium concinnum (Shining Bedstraw)
|Also known as:
|part shade, shade; dry woods
|June - August
|6 to 24 inches
|Wetland Indicator Status:
|GP: FACU MW: FACU NCNE: FACU
|MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):
|National distribution (click map to enlarge):
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Flowers are in many small clusters arising from leaf axils and at the end of branching stems. Flowers are white, about 1/16 inch across on short stalks, have 4 petals (rarely 3 or 5) pointed at the tip, and as many creamy colored stamens as there are petals.
Leaves and stem:
Leaves are mostly whorled in groups of 6, though whorled in 4s on branching stems. Leaves are slender, 1/3 to ¾ inch long with blunt or sharply pointed tips; those in a whorl are uniform in size and spacing. Leaves are slightly rough around the edges. Stems are slender and mostly smooth, or slightly rough along the angles. Plants grow erect or more often sprawling.
There are several species of bedstraw, all with small white 4-petaled flowers, some with leaves whorled in 4s, or whorled in 6s. Shining Bedstraw is distinguished from other Galium species by its airy clusters of many tiny flowers, leaves whorled mostly in 6s, and overall delicate appearance. Other 4-petaled bedstraws have flowers 1/8 inch or larger, and typically larger leaves. The woods at Wild River State Park are loaded with this stuff.
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Photos by K. Chayka taken at Wild River State Park, Chisago County. Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Anoka and Chisago counties.
Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?