Monday, March 31, 2014

Prairie Plant Profile # 7 - Golden Groundsel

My Golden Groundsel, Packera obovata, is in full bloom right now. Its bright yellow flowers cheer up the garden in early spring when many other plants are still coming out of dormancy.


The clusters of flowers rise on a single stalk 18 inches above the loose rosettes of green leaves. The plants will bloom over a couple of weeks. When the flowers mature and dry they look like little dandelions. I tidy up the plant by removing the flower stalks after the flowers go to seed.


I have never noticed Golden Groundsel to spread by seed. It primarily spreads by underground runners. When not in bloom, it is easy to overlook Golden Groundsel because the rosettes of leaves are just a few inches tall.



Golden Groundsel is drought tolerant and is said to perform well in the shade. I initially planted one under my red oak tree where it did well and spread for a few years. As the tree grew and produced more shade, the Golden Groundsel began to decline.


I moved a few rosettes to the front garden and planted them in nearly full sun where they have thrived. They are growing next to a Possumhaw Holly that will eventually provide some shade.


On warm days, the flowers are buzzing with bees 


and butterflies.


This last picture shows a Golden Groundsel that I transplanted last year. The main plant is on the left and there are smaller plant growing from the roots at a diagonal to the lower left corner of the photo. Also notice how the leaves on the flower stalk change from round to an elongated shape with deep incisions. 

Golden Groundsel is one of those plants you may have to hunt down. I have never seen Golden Groundsel available in nurseries, but it is occasionally sold at native plant sales

10 comments:

  1. Golden Groundsel was in bloom all along the Caddo Trail at Oak Point yesterday. Since the trees aren't leafed out yet, it is in partial sun. Bees were on the Golden Groundsel, but the butterflies were more interested in the white allium. And, the split rail fence is up along the patch of prairie.

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    1. I want to get out to Oak Point soon, Collagemama. I want to see what is blooming and see that fence. I am curious about how much of the prairie was protected.

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  2. Your stand is certainly to be admired. I should try to add this to my wild areas. I do have a variety called Packera glabella(butterweed) which is also attractive but much shorter.

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    1. I looked up butterweed at wildflower.org. It looks very similar to my groundsel, except butterweed is an annual. Looks like a nice plant.

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  3. I've admired groundsel in Florida, haven't seen it a lot in Texas. Certainly one I might add someday!

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    1. I have seen golden groundsel in a couple of locations up here, Misti. It would probably do well in your area too.

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  4. I'll be looking for the golden groundsel at this year's sale at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. I hope they have some. This would be a great plant for my meadow!

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    1. You are in luck. I checked and it is on their list of available plants. Good luck getting some.

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  5. This looks like one I could use. It says it's deer resistance is high.
    Thanks for showing the seedlings' leaves. So many places show the flowers, but not the leaves.

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