rough bedstraw

(Galium asprellum)

Conservation Status

 

No image available

 
  IUCN Red List

not listed

     
  NatureServe

NNR - Unranked

SNR - Unranked

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
Wetland Indicator Status
     
  Great Plains

OBL - Obligate wetland

     
  Midwest

OBL - Obligate wetland

     
  Northcentral & Northeast

OBL - Obligate wetland

     
           
 
Description
 
 

Rough bedstraw is a sprawling, up to 7 long, perennial forb that rises from a creeping rhizome.

The stems lie flat on the ground (prostrate) or climb awkwardly on adjacent vegetation (scrambling). They are slender, weak, 4-angled, usually much branched, and green, sometimes tinged with red. They are rough with minute, stiff, prickly, downward curved (hooked) hairs on the angles and usually also between the angles. The nodes of the stem are often surrounded with a ring of short, straight, spreading hairs.

The leaves are spreading or slightly ascending and stalkless. They are in whorls of 6 on the main stem, whorls of 4 or 5 on the branches. The blades are narrowly elliptic to inversely lance-shaped, to ¾ long, and to ¼ wide. They are widest above the middle, sharply pointed at the tip, and angled or squared off at the base. They have a single prominent vein running from the base to the tip, and an abrupt, short, sharp, firm point at the tip. The upper surface is hairless. The lower surface is hairless except for short, stiff, prickly hairs along the midrib. There are no glands (appearing as lines or streaks) on the lower surface. The margins are untoothed and are often somewhat curled under. They are rough with a fringe of short, stiff, prickly hairs.

The inflorescence is a small, branched, few-flowered cluster at the end of the stem and rising from the upper leaf axils. The inflorescence branches are ascending, held above the leaves, and forked 1 to 3 times.

The flowers are wide. There are no sepals, 4 petals, 4 stamens, and 2 styles. The petals are white, joined at the base into a minute tube, then separated onto 4 lobes. The lobes are spreading, egg-shaped, and pointed at the tip. The stamens have yellow anthers and are shorter than the corolla. The styles are shorter than the corolla and are topped with a white, head-like stigma. The ovary has two chambers and 2 lobes.

The fruit is a green, hairless, 1 32 to 1 16long, 1 32 wide, 1-seeded capsule, joined in pairs and separating at maturity.

 
     
 

Height

 
 

Sprawling: up to 7 long

 
     
 

Flower Color

 
 

White

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
  Shining bedstraw (Galium concinnum) has no hooked hairs on the stem or leaves. The leaves are narrower, no more than wide.  
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Wet. Woods, thickets, marshes, swamps, calcareous fens, and streamsides.

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Flowering

 
 

July to September

 
     
 
Use
 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 28, 29, 30.

 
  3/23/2021      
         
 

Nativity

 
 

Native

 
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Kingdom Plantae (green algae and land plants)  
  Subkingdom Viridiplantae (green plants)  
  Infrakingdom Streptophyta (land plants and green algae)  
  Superdivision Embryophyta (land plants)  
  Division Tracheophyta (vascular plants)  
  Subdivision Spermatophytina (seed plants)  
  Class Magnoliopsida (dicots)  
  Superorder Asteranae  
 

Order

Gentianales (gentians, dogbanes, madders, and allies)  
 

Family

Rubiaceae (madder)  
  Subfamily Rubioideae  
  Tribe Rubieae  
 

Genus

Galium (bedstraw)  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

 

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

rough bedstraw

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Axil

The upper angle where a branch, stem, leaf stalk, or vein diverges.

 

Bract

Modified leaf at the base of a flower stalk, flower cluster, or inflorescence.

 

Carpel

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

 

Corolla

A collective name for all of the petals of a flower.

 

Node

The small swelling of the stem from which one or more leaves, branches, or buds originate.

 

Panicle

A pyramidal inflorescence with a main stem and branches. Flowers on the lower, longer branches mature earlier than those on the shorter, upper ones.

 

Rhizome

A horizontal, usually underground stem. It serves as a reproductive structure, producing roots below and shoots above at the nodes.

 

 

       
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