Krigia biflora (Walt.) Blake

Krigia biflora plant

Family - Asteraceae

Stems - To 30cm tall, simple, from fibrous roots, glabrous, herbaceous, with milky sap.

Leaves - Mostly basal with typically one leaf on stem at base of lower peduncle. Basal leaves to +10cm long, +3cm broad, tissue abruptly contracted and then long cuneate to base, glabrous, shallowly lobed or not, with sparse shallow teeth or entire. Cauline leaf sessile, clasping, ovate, acute, to 3cm long, 2cm broad, glabrous, glaucous, entire.

Krigia biflora leavesBasal and cauline leaves.

Inflorescence - 1-3 flower heads terminating stem.

Involucre - In one or two series, 9mm tall (long), 7-8mm in diameter. Phyllaries 8-9mm long, 1.5mm broad, linear, glabrous, glaucous, greenish with lighter margins. Peduncles to +6cm long.

Krigia biflora involucreInvolucre.

Ray flowers - Entire flower head +/-2.5cm broad. Ligules yellow-orange, to 1.4cm long, 2-3mm broad, glabrous, notched at apex. Pappus in two series - Inner series of plumose bristles to 6mm long - Outer series of short scales to .5mm long. Achenes glabrous, terete.

Krigia biflora flower

Disk flowers - Absent.

Flowering - May - August.

Habitat - Rocky open woods, thickets, prairies, near streams, roadsides.

Origin - Native to U.S.

Other info. - This is one of the easier members of the Asteraceae to identify because of its flowering habit. The few large flowers are clustered at the tip of the stems and the peduncles subtended by the single cauline leaf. There are no disk flowers present. The stems can vary somewhat from glabrous to glandular.

Photographs taken at Taum Sauk Mountain, MO., 5-31-03.