Minnesota Puzzler

Discussion in 'Plants: Identification' started by Bobs, May 22, 2020.

  1. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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    Although this plant is grows like edging near a semi-shaded area, we suspect it was not planted there.
    So far there is no evidence of flowers or flower buds. The stems are round and smooth. The current height is about 18 inches.
     

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  2. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    This really looks like something in the Urticaceae to me but it isn't a good match for the representatives in the Minnesota flora. Failing that, I suppose the other option is Asteraceae.
     
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  3. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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    Since I posted the photos I've see this plant growing elsewhere along roadsides and woodland edges so I think it might be a common "weed." Unfortunately, I'm not adept at using a key and the lack of flowers is an additional disadvantage in that regard. Thanks.
     
  4. Tyrlych

    Tyrlych Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    I thought about Asteraceae too. What about Heliopsis ?
     
  5. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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    Given the plant's location, I wish it was Heliopsis--but I think it's not that. Thanks.
     
  6. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I thought the asymmetrical leaves would be a good clue, but that didn't help me any. I hope you remember to post the flowers here when you see them.
     
  7. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Most of the Asteraceae tribe (Heliantheae) that are related to Heliopsis have a sunflower oil/seed smell to the crushed leaves -- is that possible for the person to check (with gloves or similar protection).
     
  8. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    Square stems, opposite leaves.
    Might it be Stachys?
     
  9. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    It's so un-hairy, though. But, Stachys tenuifolia is not hairy and grows all over neighbouring Wisconsin. I didn't think the stems looked square - @Bobs could tell us about that. If stems are square, Teucrium canadense might be in the running too?
     
  10. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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    I couldn't detect an odor that resembles what you described. However, a closer look indicates that the stems aren't entirely round as I had originally indicated. Although the main stem is entirely smooth so far as I can detect, minute hairs are present on the petioles and upper surface of the leaves. Also, stipules (or flower buds?) are developing in some leaf axils. My guess is that the plant is an urticaceae as you suggested a while ago. Here are some fresh photos:
     

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  11. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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  12. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    I had considered that one (and thought it was the strongest candidate within the Urticaceae), but my concern was petiole length. In many of the photos online, the length of the petiole seems quite dramatic so that there is a sense of airiness about the plant. I don't quite get that from these photos, but maybe it is because of growing situation.
     
  13. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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    Thanks for your comments in this regard.
     
  14. Bobs

    Bobs Active Member

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    Flower buds have formed. So the plant isn't an Urticaceae). I've concluded it's probably white snakeroot.

    Flower buds have formed. I've concluded it's probably white snakeroot.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 6, 2020
  15. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Remember to show us when the flowers are open.
     
  16. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    With the formation of flower buds, that'll point it to Asteraceae pretty quickly.
     

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