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Packera plattensis   (Nutt. ) W.A. Weber & A. Löve
[=Senecio plattensis Nutt.]
Riley County, Kansas
Biennial or short-lived perennial
Height: 4-28 inches
Family: Asteraceae - Sunflower Family
Flowering Period:   April, May, June
Also Called: Prairie ragwort.
Stems: Erect, single or rarely 2-3-clustered, generally unbranched, woolly-hairy below.
Leaves: Alternate, stalked below, sessile above, sometimes purplish-tinged, woolly-hairy when young, nearly glabrous when mature; basal leaves elliptic-ovate to oblong-lanceolate, 1/2 to 4 inches long, 1/4 to 2 inches wide; margins toothed; stem leaves pinnately divided, irregularly dissected, or, nearly entire; upper leaves gradually reduced in size.
Inflorescences: Flat-topped clusters of 6-20 heads, terminal; heads bell-shaped, about 1 inch wide; bracts frequently 13 or 21, about 1/4 inch long.
Flowers: Ray florets 8-13, less than 1/2 inch long, yellow; disk florets numerous, corollas yellowish orange.
Fruits: Achenes, ribbed, minutely hairy or glabrous, tipped with long, white, hair-like bristles, enclosing small seed.
Habitat: Dry upland prairies and roadsides, on rocky, sandy or gravelly soils.
Distribution: Nearly throughout Kansas.
Toxicity: Prairie groundsel can be poisonous to cattle, and they are known to consume it. However, it rarely occurs in populations large enough to be a problem.

Prairie groundsel head
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Prairie groundsel
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Russell County, Kansas
Prairie groundsel in fruit
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Prairie groundsel
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Prairie groundsel
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Prairie groundsel
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Prairie groundsel
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Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Prairie groundsel
138 KB
Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas