Euthamia gymnospermoides (Great Plains Goldenrod)

Plant Info
Also known as: Texas Goldentop, Viscid Goldenrod
Family:Asteraceae (Aster)
Life cycle:perennial
Habitat:sun; average to dry, sandy soil; open prairie and savanna
Bloom season:July - September
Plant height:18 to 36 inches
Wetland Indicator Status:GP: FAC MW: FACW NCNE: FACW
MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):Minnesota county distribution map
National distribution (click map to enlarge):National distribution map

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Detailed Information

Flower: Flower shape: 7+petals Cluster type: flat

[photo of flowers] Dense, semi-round to flat-topped clusters of 14 to 20 small, yellow flowers at the tips of stems and branches throughout crown. Individual flowers are narrowly cylindrical, about ¼ inch long and about half as wide with 9 to 13 short rays (petals) and 4 to 6 central disk flowers.

[photo of bracts] Most flowers are short-stalked the rest stalkless. The outside bracts are green-tipped and often sticky with resin.

Leaves and stems: Leaf attachment: alternate Leaf type: simple

[photo of leaves] Leaves are simple and alternate, mostly linear, 1½ to 3¾ inches long and 1/10 to 2/10 inch wide, usually with one dominant vein, largest leaves with 1 or 2 additional, but obscure veins. The tips are gently tapered to a sharp point and the bases are stalkless. Surfaces are smooth except for rough textured edges or a few hairs along the veins on the underside. Also present are very small, glandular dots densely covering the surface though a hand lens is required to see these. Stems are hairless, mostly unbranched in the lower plant with many erect branches on the upper stem, creating a bushy crown.


Once included in the Solidago genus, Great Plains Goldenrod is similar to other goldenrods except for its narrow linear leaves and bushy habit with many small flower clusters throughout the crown. It is very similar to Grass-leaved Goldenrod (Euthamia graminifolia) which can be distinguished by the 3 to 5 distinct veins on its leaves, larger clusters of smaller flowers, typically twice as many flowers per cluster, twice as many (though minute) rays per flower, and mostly stalkless flowers. Habitat is also diagnostic with E. gymnospermoides preferring higher and drier open prairie where E. graminifolia is found on lower, moist to wet prairies, shores and wetlands.

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More photos

Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken at Ordway Prairie (TNC) in Pope county and at Helen Allison SNA (TNC) in Anoka county.


Have you seen this plant in Minnesota, or have any other comments about it?

Posted by: Steve - Lost Valley SNA
on: 2013-09-12 19:31:06

Verified today that this plant is found at Lost Valley SNA. Checked the leaves and they only had one vein. This is a first for the SNA -Yeah. Have only found them in one spot so far but will be keeping my eye out for them from now on. The spot is an old prairie patch that the DNR thought would never amount to anything. They burned it and it has become one of the better spots.

Posted by: Kevin - Chester Woods Park, Olmsted County
on: 2016-08-25 21:37:53

Was getting dark but looked like it had only a single vein leaves and was found in semi-dry prairie

Posted by: Brett - Sand Dunes State Forest
on: 2017-03-01 19:33:44

Going through pictures from 9/3/2016 and have confidently ID'd this as this plant. First time seeing it here or anywhere for that matter.

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