Desmodium glutinosum (Pointed-leaf Tick-trefoil)
|Also known as:||Large-flower tickclover|
|Habitat:||part shade, shade; woods, thickets|
|Bloom season:||June - August|
|Plant height:||1 to 4 feet|
|USDA PLANTS database:||Minnesota county distribution map|
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Flowers are scattered on spike-like clusters branching off the top of the main stem. Individual flowers are about ¼ inch long and wide, with a round upper lobe and 3 narrow lower lobes, the middle one folded lengthwise. There is a long curving style and yellow-tipped stamens against the upper lobe. The color is usally pink, occasionally white.
Leaves and stem:
Several long-stemmed compound leaves, grouped in 3's, are just below the flower clusters, alternately attached but nearly whorled. Leaflets are up to 5 inches long, 3½ inches wide, sparsely hairy, oval to tear drop shaped with a sharply pointed tip. The end leaf is largest and much broader than the side leaflets. The main stem may be sparsely covered in spreading hairs, and somewhat sticky.
Notes:Pointed-leaf Tick-trefoil and American Lopseed both have pink spikes and bloom at the same time in about the same habitat, sometimes next to each other. American Lopseed has coarsely toothed leaves oppositely attached, and the upper lobe of the flowers is narrow, turned up.
Where to buy native seed and plants
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- Pointed-leaf Tick-trefoil plant, about 3 feet tall
- more flowers
- white Pointed-leaf Tick-trefoil flowers
Photos taken at Wild River State Park, Center City, MN and Vadnais/Snail Lake Regional Park, Shoreview, MN July 2008
Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?