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Plains Blackfoot

Melampodium leucanthum

Plains Blackfoot, Melampodium leucanthum, watercolor illustration © by Michael Plagens

From live specimen observed at Castle Hot Springs, Maricopa Co., Arizona, USA. 16 March 1992.

FLOWERS: Daisies opening white then fading to delicate lavender as they age. A healthy plant may have fifty or more flower heads creating a truly beautiful bouquet. Flowering mostly in spring, but also at other times of year, moisture permitting.

ACHENE: The three-angled seeds (called achenes and pictured at left) have a distinct collar and transverse ridges.

PERENNIAL: The above ground stems die back after drought or killing frost; the long-lived crown and root stock regrow year after year.

RANGE: A fairly common plant above 800 m where the Sonoran Desert is giving way to chaparral or grassland.

LEAVES: Leaves elyptic with a few broad teeth on margins.

Asteraceae -- Sunflower Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 13 May 2001, update 28 January 2013