Madwort ID’d

Madwort

Madwort

Jim E sent two photos he took of this plant to Jennifer Ackerfield of the CSU Herbarium.

6/24/2010 Jennifer emailed: “Ah, you have Asperugo procumbens. I had it in my yard too this year. Weird little Boraginaceae with downward pointing bristles/hairs on the stem.”

6/24/2010 Jim’s response: “I thought it had to be a borage, what with the coarse ‘hairs’ —Weber & Wittmann say ‘The name borage comes from a Middle Latin source, burra, meaning rough hair or short wool, just as the modern work, bur.’ Somehow, I got trapped in the doublet that led to Symphytum and Anchusa. I should have looked a bit further to Asperugo. The description fits perfectly: ‘Flowers in the axils of the stem leaves; fruiting calyx much larger than the flowers; weakly-stemmed annual with retrorsely prickly hispid leaves. Asperugo Madwort.'”

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