cleavers

(Galium aparine)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

cleavers

NatureServe

N5 - Secure

SNR - Unranked

Minnesota

not listed

Wetland
Indicator
Status

Great Plains

FACU - Facultative upland

Midwest

FACU - Facultative upland

Northcentral & Northeast

FACU - Facultative upland

Nativity

Native

 
Occurrence

Very common

 
Habitat

Moist. Woods. Shade.

 
Flowering

June to August

     
Flower Color

White

     
Height

Scrambling, 4 to 40 long

     

Identification

This is a 4 to 40 long, more or less scrambling, annual forb that rises on multiple stems from shallow roots.

The stems are scrambling, slender, weak, 4-angled, hollow, and seldom much branched. The angles have short, stiff, hooked, downward-pointing hairs.

The leaves are in stalkless and in whorls of usually 8, sometimes 6 or 7. The blades are linear or linear inversely lance-shaped, to 3 long, and less than wide. They have a single prominent vein running from the base to the tip. There is an abrupt, short, sharp, firm point at the tip. The upper surface is rough with firm, stiff, hooked hairs. The lower surface has short, stiff, backward-pointing hairs on the midvein. The margins are untoothed and have short, stiff, backward-pointing hairs.

The inflorescences are clusters of 3 to 5 flowers rising directly from upper leaf axils, and sometimes an elongated stalk that rises from an upper leaf axil and has several clusters.

The flowers are about wide. They consist of 4 white petals with pointed tips, 4 sepals that are shorter than the petals, 4 short stamens, and 2 short, pale yellow styles. There are 2 carpels at the base of the flower. The carpels are joined together, green, and covered with stiff, hooked hairs.

The fruit is a grayish-brown, ball-like carpel, joined in pairs, usually covered with hooked hairs, rarely hairless, containing 1 seed.

 
Similar
Species

False baby’s breath (Galium mollugo) also has leaves in whorls of 6 to 8. However, the stem, leaves, and carpels are hairless. The inflorescence has many flowers and is larger, highly branched, and showy. The flowers are larger. In Minnesota it has been recorded only in St. Louis County.

Rough bedstraw (Galium asprellum) has many branches. The leaves on the stem are in whorls of 6, those on the branches in whorls of 4 or 5.


Distribution Distribution Map   Sources: 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 28.

Comments

The hooked hairs on the leaves and stem grab onto (cleave to) clothing, bird feathers, and animal fur, giving this plant it’s common name.


Taxonomy

Family:

Rubiaceae (madder)

 

Subfamily:

Rubioideae

 

Tribe:

Rubieae

 
Synonyms

Galium agreste var. echinospermum

Galium aparine var. echinospermum

Galium aparine var. intermedium

Galium aparine var. minor

Galium aparine var. vaillantii

Galium spurium var. echinospermum

Galium spurium var. vaillantii

Galium spurium var. vaillantii

Galium vaillantii

 
Common
Names

annual bedstraw

bedstraw

catch-weed bedstraw

catchweed bedstraw

cleavers

cleaverwort

goose grass

goose-grass

scarthgrass

sticky-willy

stickywilly

white hedge


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

axil

The upper angle where the leaf stalk meets the stem.

 

carpel

The female reproductive organ of a flower, consisting of an ovary, styles, and stigmas.

 

scrambling

Climbing awkwardly over adjacent vegetation or structures.

 

sepal

An outer floral leaf, usually green but sometimes colored, at the base of a flower.

       

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  cleavers   cleavers
       
  cleavers    
       
       

 

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  Galium aparine ANNUAL BEDSTRAW
Frank Mayfield
 
  Galium aparine ANNUAL BEDSTRAW  

 

slideshow

     

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  Edible plants Cleavers Galium aparine
MiWilderness
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on May 28, 2011

Cleavers have had many uses throughout history. Here are the main features for identification and to distinguish Cleavers from close impostors.

 
     
  Cleavers (Galium Aparine) / Stickywilly - 2012-06-23
W3stlander
 
   
 
About

Published on Jun 25, 2012

Galium aparine is a herbaceous annual plant of the family Rubiaceae. It is native to North America and Eurasia. It has several common names, including Cleavers, Clivers, Goosegrass, Stickywilly, Sticky willow, Stickyjack, Stickyweed, Stickyleaf, Catchweed, Robin-run-the-hedge, Coachweed, and Bedstraw.

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Kleefkruid (Galium aparine) is een plant uit de sterbladigenfamilie (Rubiaceae).

 
     
  Cleavers
adamitshelanu
 
   
 
About

Published on May 12, 2013

Cleavers

Uncle Steve has been fishing along Crabtree Creek at Valley Mall in Raleigh, NC and finds clusters of this "lazy" distinctive wildflower.

This wildflower (weed) is: Cleavers
Galium aparine
Goosegrass, Annual Bedstraw

Date: 01 MAY 2013

[vado avidemux audacity inkscape irfanview]

 
     

 

Camcorder

         

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