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Solidago speciosa (Showy goldenrod)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Solidago speciosa

Solidago speciosa Nutt.

Showy Goldenrod, Noble Goldenrod

Asteraceae (Aster Family)


USDA Symbol: SOSP2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)

The erect, usually unbranched, reddish stems of this perennial are 1-6 ft. tall and occur singly or in clusters. Small, yellow flowers occur in a compact, erect, pyramidal column. A stout stem, smooth below and rough above, bearing a dense, pyramidal or club-shaped, terminal cluster of small yellow flower heads.

This is one of the showiest of about 125 species of goldenrod that occur throughout the United States; they are most common in the East.


From the Image Gallery

7 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: Up to about 6 feet tall.
Fruit: Fruit is a cypsela (pl. cypselae). Though technically incorrect, the fruit is often referred to as an achene.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AL , AR , CO , CT , DE , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , ND , NE , NH , NJ , NM , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , VA , VT , WI , WV , WY
Canada: ON
Native Distribution: MA to GA mts., w. to WY, e. CO, n.e. NM, and central TX
Native Habitat: Open woods; prairies

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Rocky or clay soils.
Conditions Comments: This very showy goldenrod can become aggressive in moist soils.


Use Wildlife: This species attracts butterflies.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Birds

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees
Special Value to Honey Bees
Supports Conservation Biological Control

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.


Description: Seed germination may be increased with stratification, but this pre-treatment is not absolutely necessary. If planting untreated seed, be sure it is fresh. Propagate also by division.
Seed Collection: Collect in October.
Seed Treatment: Cold-moist or dry stratification.
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Delaware Nature Society - Hockessin, DE
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Research Literature

Reslit 1181 - Assessment of heat-expanded slate and fertility requirements in green roof substrates (2006) D. B. Rowe, M. A. Monterusso and C. L. Rugh

This information was provided by the Florida WIldflower Foundation.
Search More Titles in Research Literature

Additional resources

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


Record Modified: 2023-01-16
Research By: TWC Staff

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