Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia
Desmodium canadense (L.) DC.
Showy tick trefoil
Fabaceae (Pea Family)
Erect, bushy, hairy plant with crowded, elongated terminal clusters of pink or rose-purple pea-like flowers. Showy tick-trefoil is a slender-stemmed, often bushy perennial,
2-6 ft. high. Hundreds of rose-colored, pea-like flowers occur in dense, nodding clusters at the tops of the stems. Velvety hair covers the stems and three-parted, compound
leaves. Seedpods cling to animal fur or clothing.
The most showy of the Tick Trefoils is one of some two dozen species distinguished by their leaf and fruit
shape. The distinctively jointed fruits, known as loments, break into 1-seeded segments, that stick to clothes and animal fur, thus facilitating seed dispersal.
Image Gallery: 5 photo(s) available
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Flower:
Brown Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Pink , Purple
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep
CT , DE , IL , IN , IA , KS , ME , MD , MA , MI , MN , MO , NE , NH , NJ , NY , ND , OH , OK , PA , RI , SD , TX , VT , VA , WV , WI Canada: MB
, QC Native Distribution:
N.S. to s. Sask., s. to MD, WV, TN, LA & OK Native Habitat:
Open woods; rocky or sandy prairies; stream banks; roadsides; waste places USDA Native Status: L48(N), CAN(N)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Moist , Dry
Soil Description: Moist soils. Indifferent to soil acidity.
Conditions Comments: Highly adaptable, this plant can take over a small garden.
BenefitUse Wildlife: Hummingbirds.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Hummingbirds , Butterflies
Larval Host: Eastern Tailed Blue, Silver-spotted Skipper, Hoary Edge.
Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)
is a larval host and/or nectar source for: