Ontario Weeds: Small burnet
Excerpt from Publication 505, Ontario Weeds,
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Table of Contents
- Other Names
- General Description
- Stems and Roots
- Flowers and Fruit
- Similar Species
- Related Links
Name: Small burnet, Sanguisorba minor
Other Names: Salad burnet, sanguisorbe mineure, petite pimprenelle
Family: Rose Family (Rosaceae)
General Description: Perennial, reproducing only by seed.
Stems & Roots: Stems 20-70cm
(8-28in.) high, spreading or erect from the short, thick underground
rootstalk, slender, wiry, usually branched in the upper part; rosette.
Leaves: Numerous, pinnately compound with up to 17 small oval leaflets, each with 3 to 7 prominent teeth on each side, usually lighter green below than above; stem leaves alternate (1 per node), scattered, shorter and have fewer leaflets; stipules small and toothed on upper stem leaves but very small or absent from rosette and lower stem leaves.
Flowers & Fruit: Flowers individually very small but clustered together in dense, ovoid, greenish heads on long leafless branches; each flower has 4 small, green or brown sepals but no petals, the lower flowers in each head having no pistils but many stamens with long drooping filaments; the upper flowers having 2 pistils but no stamens, or being bisexual with both stamens and pistils; each pistil producing a pair of semi-ovoid hard seeds. Flowers from May to July.
Habitat: Small burnet occurs in several scattered localities in southern Ontario, usually in coarse sandy or gravelly soils, in pastures, meadows, waste areas, and roadsides.
Similar Species: It is distinguished by its pinnately compound leaves with many, small, toothed leaflets, and its greenish, ovoid heads of many densely packed small flowers.
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