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Many-flower Stickseed Hackelia floribunda


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Many-flower Stickseed
© Angelina Lax

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Family: Boraginaceae, Borage view all from this family

Description Small, pale blue, funnel-shaped flowers grow in a long, open, branched cluster at top of one or a few leafy stems, branches coiled at tips.
Habit: native biennial or perennial herb; erect, hairy, leafy stems
Height: 1-4 ft (0.3-1.2 m)
Leaf: basal, broadly lanceolate, stalked, to 8 in (200 mm) long; on stem, stalkless, becoming smaller above.
Flower: small, light blue, 1/4 in (6 mm) wide; 5-lobed, with yellow rim around center.
Fruit: 1-4 tiny hard nutlets, 0.125-0.2 in (3-5 mm) long, with sharp, hooked prickles on edges.

Flower June to August.

Habitat Well-watered montane and subalpine locations, generally near coniferous forests; moist thickets, moist meadows; upper elevations.

Range Native to western North America, from British Columbia to northern Texas, north to Colorado, Nebraska, the Dakotas, and Manitoba; also found in Ontario and Pennsylavania.

Discussion Also known as false forget-me-not, showy stickseed. It is the prickles on the nutlets that distinguish these plants from Forget-me-nots (Myosotis). The similar Jessicas Stickseed (H. micrantha), from the Sierra Nevada to Utah and Wyoming and northward into Canada, generally has several stems and several very small prickles on the back of each nutlet.