Bidens cernua L.
Bidens cernua L. var. cernua
Bidens cernua L. var. dentata (Nutt.) B. Boivin
Bidens cernua L. var. elliptica Wiegand
Bidens cernua L. var. integra Wiegand
Bidens cernua L. var. minima (Huds.) Pursh
Bidens cernua L. var. oligodonta Fernald & H. St. John
Bidens cernua L. var. radiata DC.
Bidens glaucescens Greene
Nodding beggartick, bur marigold, nodding bur marigold, sticktight
Nodding beggar-ticks, so-called because their relatively large flowers tend to face sideways or nod downwards, are found near shorelines and the edges of wetlands, in sandy or mucky soil.
Plants: Plants can reach 13' (4 m), but are typically a few feet in height.
Flowers: Composite flowers are 1-2" (2.5-5 cm) across, and have up to 8 petals, though rarely the ray flowers are missing and only the tubular disk flowers are present. The flowers are sideways-facing, rather than upward-facing.
Fruits: Fruits are brown, hard, and triangular in shape, with four barbed spears of roughly equal length called awns, designed to hook onto anything that passes by.
These are similar:
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|Plant||Up to 13' (4 m) high, usually less than 3' (91 cm)||12-36" (30-91 cm) high, rarely up to 6' (1.8 m). Stems are square in cross-section, nearly hairless, and light green, reddish green, or purple||24-36" (60-91 cm) high, rarely up to 6' (1.8 m). Plants and flowers tend to look disheveled.|
|Flowers||Composite flowers are 1-2" (2.5-5 cm) across, have up to 8 petals, though rarely the ray flowers are missing and only the tubular disk flowers are present. The flowers are sideways-facing, rather than upward-facing||Each composite flower is composed of 20-60 orange-yellow disc florets about ⅜-½" (9.5-12 mm) around, and rarely a few yellow rays, each ¹/₁₆-⅛" (2-3.5 mm) long. They are encompassed in 6-10 phyllaries, like a rosette of small leaves. Flowers occur in groups of 1-12, appearing from late summer to early fall.||Yellow flowers are 1½-2½" (3.8-6.3 cm) around, with 8 petals. Each is a composite flower. They bloom from July to October.|
|Leaves||Opposite, and sessile or clasping—leaf bases wrap around the stem. Leaves are 1½-8" (4-20 cm) long × up to 1" (2.5 cm) wide, and simple (unlobed)||Lower leaves are odd pinnate clusters on long petioles, in opposite pairs; upper leaves may be alternate. Leaves are up to 3" (7.6 cm) × 1" (2.5 cm), coarsely toothed, deltate or lanceolate.||1½-8" (3.8-20 cm) long, narrow, with coarse (dentate or serrate) teeth. They vary in shape from obovate or elliptic to lanceolate or linear|
|Fruit||Fruits are brown, hard, and triangular in shape, with four barbed spears of roughly equal length called awns||The seeds or achenes are shaped like a narrow triangle, with two barbed fork tips that attach to fur or clothes. The seeds are also distributed by the wind.||Seeds have barbed tips, which hitchhike on passers-by to find new locations.|
|Habitats||Near shorelines and the edges of wetlands, in sandy or mucky soil||Moist woods, meadows, thickets, fields, roadsides, railroads, borders of streams, ponds, sloughs, swamps, ditches||Saturated or flooded soils|
Bidens cernua at Minnesota Wildflowers
Bidens cernua on gobotany.nativeplanttrust.org
Bidens cernua on michiganflora.net
Bidens cernua at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Bidens cernua description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 18 Sep 2020.