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Mimosa microphylla (Littleleaf sensitive briar)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Mimosa microphylla

Mimosa microphylla Dryand.

Littleleaf Sensitive Briar, Little-leaf Mimosa, Catclaw Sensitive Briar, Smooth-leaf Sensitive Briar, Pink Sensitive Briar, Shame Vine

Fabaceae (Pea Family)

Synonym(s): Leptoglottis angustisiliqua, Leptoglottis chapmanii, Leptoglottis microphylla, Mimosa quadrivalvis var. angustata, Morongia angustata, Morongia microphylla, Morongia uncinata, Schrankia angustata, Schrankia microphylla, Schrankia uncinata

USDA Symbol: MIMI22

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Weak, sprawling stems, up to 3 ft. long, are armed with hooked prickles. Bi-pinnately compound leaves, having an airy appearance. The leaflets are sensitive to the touch if one brushes against them or touches them, they immediately fold up against each other, suggesting the name "sensitive briar." They also close at night and in cloudy weather. The fragrant flowers look like small pink balls and grow along the stem at varying intervals. They have 4 or 5 sepals, 4 or 5 united petals, 8-10 pink or rose-purple stamens, and 1 pistilFlower heads occur on stalks from leaf axils. The fruit is a long, slender pod, densely covered with prickles.

Smooth-leaf Sensitive-brier is a member of the pea family (Fabaceae), which includes trees, shrubs, herbs, and vines with compound or occasionally simple leaves and flowers usually in clusters.


From the Image Gallery

6 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Fruit Type: Legume
Size Notes: Stems sprawling, up to about 3 feet long.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul


USA: AL , FL , GA , KY , LA , MS , NC , SC , TN , TX , VA
Native Distribution: IL to SD & s.e. CO, s. to TX
Native Habitat: Prairies; ravines; open woods

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Rocky or sandy, dry or well-drained soils


Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Fragrant Flowers: yes
Interesting Foliage: yes


Bibref 248 - Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide (1984) Loughmiller, C. & L. Loughmiller

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Research Literature

Reslit 2886 - Legumes of the United States. IV. Mimosa (1971) Duane Isely

This information was provided by the Florida WIldflower Foundation.
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Additional resources

USDA: Find Mimosa microphylla in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Mimosa microphylla in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Mimosa microphylla


Record Modified: 2015-01-29
Research By: TWC Staff

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