Galinsoga parviflora (Small-flowered Galinsoga)
|Also known as:||Gallant Soldier, Little-flower Quickweed|
|Habitat:||part shade, sun; disturbed soil; roadsides, gardens, fields, waste areas|
|Bloom season:||July - September|
|Plant height:||4 to 24 inches|
|Wetland Indicator Status:||GP: UPL MW: FACU NCNE: UPL|
|MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):|
|National distribution (click map to enlarge):|
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Flowers are at the end of smooth or short-hairy stalks arising from the leaf axils in the upper plant and at the tips of branching stems. Individual flowers are about ¼ inch across with 4 to 8 (usually 5) short, white rays (petals), each notched in 2 or 3 parts, about as wide as long, and typically widely spaced around the center disk. Disk flowers are golden yellow.
Leaves and stems:
Leaves are mostly shallowly toothed with fine hairs around the edges. Surfaces are mostly hairless except for scattered hairs on the major veins on the underside. Stems are smooth to sparsely hairy, erect to sprawling, and heavily branched.
Likely an under-reported weed, Small-flowered Galinsoga resembles the related Shaggy Soldier (Galinsoga quadriradiata), which is hairier overall, has larger white rays on the flowers that are typically notched in 3 parts, and has a distinct awn at the tip of seed scales. There are 2 recognized varieties of G. parviflora, though they are not universally accepted: var. semicalva has leaves that are narrower and mostly toothless, has more compact flower clusters and is present only known to be in a few southwestern US states, and var. parviflora, described above, found across much of North America, including Minnesota.
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Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Kittson County.
Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?