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Plains Ragwort

Photo by Dwight Platt

Common Name: Plains Ragwort

Scientific Name: Packera plattensis

Family: Aster

Longevity: Perennial

Height: 10 - 20 inches

Bloom Period: April and May


Description: Stem is erect and branched above. Leaves are grouped mostly at the base and variable. Lower leaves are toothed, becoming smaller and more lobed above. Yellow-orange daisy-like flowers are grouped in a flat head at the top of the plant.

Comments: The ragged appearance of the leaves probably accounts for the common name used here. Ragworts and related plants have been used since ancient times to heal wounds and abscesses. American Indians eased the pains of childbirth with a preparation made from Plains Ragwort. Flies and small bees visit the flowers. Ragwort is avoided by cattle because of bitter-tasting chemicals produced by the plants. Plains Ragwort grows on open, upland prairies throughout most of the state

Photo by Iralee Barnard