Geum canadense (White Avens)

Plant Info
Also known as:
Family:Rosaceae (Rose)
Life cycle:perennial
Habitat:part shade, shade; thickets, woods
Bloom season:May - July
Plant height:1 to 3 feet
Wetland Indicator Status:GP: FAC MW: FAC NCNE: FAC
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: 5-petals

[photo of flower] 1 to 3 long-stalked flowers at the top of the stem and arising from leaf axils in the upper plant. Flowers are ½ inch wide with 5 white rounded petals, alternating with 5 pointed green sepals, as long as or shorter than the petals and dark green but pale around the edges. Numerous creamy tipped stamens surround a dome-shaped center covered with numerous thick green styles.

Leaves and stem: Leaf attachment: alternate Leaf type: compound Leaf type: palmate Leaf type: simple

[photo of basal leaves] Basal leaves are long stalked and compound with 3 to 7 leaflets. Leaflets are coarsely toothed variably hairy. The end leaflet is the largest, up to 4 inches long and 3 inches across, often lobed in 2 or 3 parts in the lower plant. Lateral leaflets are variable in shape but mostly oval to diamond shaped.

[photo of leaves] Stem leaves are mostly palmately compound in 3s, becoming smaller and shorter stalked as they ascend the stem, eventually becoming simple in the flower cluster. Stems are slightly hairy and may feel rough, mostly erect with a few branches in the upper plant.

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More photos

Photos by K. Chayka taken in Ramsey County. Photos courtesy Peter M. Dziuk taken in Dakota County.


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

Posted by: Brian - St. Peter
on: 2014-07-13 00:19:06

This plant was in flower on a partly-shaded slope (an oak savanna restoration area)at Ottawa Bluffs Preserve (The Nature Conservancy)in Le Sueur County on July 3.

Posted by: grikdog - St. Paul
on: 2015-06-26 22:22:19

This plant has started popping up in my yard, garden. I am not sure how much I like it yet. A few is OK but I don't want it taking over.

Posted by: Suzanne - Bloomington
on: 2016-07-03 13:18:06

Found this growing under the pine trees in my back yard along with a lot of other plants (weeds/vines) that I'm still trying to identify.

Posted by: Amy - Minnetonka
on: 2017-04-09 10:48:44

I'm on a woody, shaded lot and have been removing mass amounts of buckthorn over the last 3 years. As I was pulling some early garlic mustard this spring, I ran across quite a few of these. As I'm hoping to replenish the lot with natives, I've decided to leave it and see what happens.

Posted by: L. Dale - Webster in Rice county
on: 2017-06-16 19:00:37

Seems to be quite widespread here in area we don't mow often.

Posted by: Cindy - Oakdale
on: 2017-07-12 22:31:46

This started popping up in my woody backyard last it is everywhere. Not appreciating it much as it is scraggly and the flowers are almost invisible. I left it last year because I thought it might be a nice addition to our wild gardens, but it spreads too fast.

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