Matricaria discoidea (Pineapple-weed)

Plant Info
Also known as: Disc Mayweed
Genus:Matricaria
Family:Asteraceae (Aster)
Life cycle:annual
Origin:Pacific Northwest
Status:
  • Weedy
Habitat:part shade, sun; dry; road sides, waste areas
Bloom season:May - September
Plant height:3 to 12 inches
Wetland Indicator Status:GP: FACU MW: FACU NCNE: FACU
MN county distribution (click map to enlarge):Minnesota county distribution map
National distribution (click map to enlarge):National distribution map

Pick an image for a larger view. See the glossary for icon descriptions.

Detailed Information

Flower: Flower shape: indistinct

[photo of flowers] Flowers are single at the tips of branching stems, yellowish green dome-shaped heads ¼ to 1/3 inch across. There are no petals (ray flowers), only disk flowers. The bracts surrounding the base of the flower head have a white papery edge.

Leaves and stem: Leaf attachment: alternate Leaf type: lobed

[photo of leaves] Leaves are up to 2 inches long and ¾ inch wide, deeply divided and branching into narrow, segments, looking feathery or fern-like. Leaves and stem both may have a few sparse hairs, but are mostly hairless.

Fruit: Fruit type: seed without plume

[photo of fruit] The disk becomes a head of small, brown seed without tufts of hair.

Notes:

Pineapple-weed may have originated in the Pacific Northwest or Asia; either way it is not considered native to Minnesota. It's a weedy thing often found in dry disturbed soil, and tends to form colonies. The common name reportedly comes from the pineapple-like smell of crushed leaves and flowers. It is likely far more widespread in the state than the distribution map indicates.

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More photos

Photos by K. Chayka taken in Ramsey County.

Comments

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

Posted by: Lisa R - Nevis (north central)
on: 2009-08-20 14:11:08

Very abundant here. In my yard and along roads.

Posted by: M. Bartz - Southern Carlton County
on: 2010-05-23 08:41:37

As a child I knew this plant as Snakeweed, because my father told me it reminded him of the smell of gardner snake winter dens. I never thought of this plant as smelling like pineapple, yet I have always enjoyed the smell. I can still remember picking this flower in my grandmother's driveway as a small child.

Posted by: Rose - Cottonwood County
on: 2015-05-20 17:34:15

You can find this in Cottonwood County.

Posted by: Lori - Carver (Dahlgren Twp)
on: 2015-07-06 09:59:28

Yes this is prevalent in Carver county with sandy/loam soils.

Posted by: Philip - Lake County, Silver Bay
on: 2016-07-07 21:10:08

During the 1960's growing up in Silver Bay we would have a small number of plants come back year after year in the same area of our yard, the corner where our driveway and the city sidewalk met. Our soil was red clay. After wondering all these years I now know the name of this plant.

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