MOTH MULLEIN
File Size: 68 KB
 
Verbascum blattaria  L.
Konza Prairie, Riley County, Kansas
Biennial
Height: 18-60 inches
Family: Scrophulariaceae - Figwort Family
Flowering Period:   June, July, August, September
Stems: Erect, slender, usually simple, occasionally branched, glabrous below, glandular-hairy above.
Leaves: First year in basal rosette, short-stalked, oblong, 2 to 8 inches long, .5 to 1.25 inch wide, conspicuously veined; margins toothed or lobed; tips pointed; second year stem leaves alternate, simple, clasping, lanceolate, .5 to 2.5 inches long, glabrous; margins toothed; upper leaves reduced in size.
Inflorescences: Racemes, elongate, 1 to 2 feet long, loosely flowered, terminal.
Flowers: Calyces deeply 5-parted, segments lanceolate, equal; corollas about 1 inch across, 5-lobed, white or yellow; stamens 5, filaments hairy, reddish violet.
Fruits: Capsules, spherical, about 1/3 inch long, 2-celled, finely glandular-hairy; seeds numerous, tiny, dark brown.
Habitat: Disturbed sites, waste areas, overgrazed pastures, and roadsides, most abundant in dry gravelly soils.
Distribution: Principally east 1/2 of Kansas.
Comments: This weedy species is a native of Eurasia. Usually, only 2-3 flowers open at a time, and then only for a few hours. "Moth" (Latin blatta) is a reference to the resemblance of the flower to a moth with outstretched wings.

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