The cotyledons (seed leaves) are broadly stalked, oval to egg shaped, and hairless. The first true leaves are more closley egg shaped and are covered with coarse, barbed and bristly hairs, which arise from blisterlike swellings. Leaves are alternate to one another along the stem. Later leaves are similar to the first leaf but are increasingly larger.
Native to the southeastern US, Bristly Locust's showy flowers and bristly stems and fruits likely made it an attractive addition to the garden trade. Unfortunately it escapes cultivation, can produce dense colonies through root suckering and can be difficult to manage without resorting to toxic chemicals. There are few records of it in the Bell Herbarium but we are seeing it more and more in the wild; additional Minnesota populations are currently being tracked at EDDMapS. It is readily identified at virtually any stage of growth from the compound leaves with red-prickly stalks and young branches, the prickles persisting through the second year, though turning brown. There are several varieties of Robinia hispida, all of which are native to various parts of the southeastern US. The vars are poorly documented but only var. hispida has been officially recorded in Minnesota.
This showy flowering shrub grows to 8 feet tall and wide and features dark green, compound pinnate leaves on bristly stems and pendant clusters of fragrant, pea-like, rose-pink flowers that are attractive to bees and butterflies in late spring and early summer. The flowers are occasionally followed by bristly, reddish-brown seed pods. Native to the southeastern United States, this aggressive shrub spreads by suckers and is considered invasive in Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Washington. All parts of this plant are at least mildly poisonous.
Height of sericea lespedeza in this current study is consistent with other studies (Swearingen and Bargeron 2016; Burner and Burke 2012). In contrast, smooth sumac and bristly locust were shorter than that reported in other studies, (USDA NRCS 2018; Burner and Burke 2012), which is reasonable as the plants in this study at the initiation had been transplanted less than a year earlier and were mowed before the growing season, whereas in other studies plants were more than 2 years old. In addition, plant height depends on factors such as soil type, fertility, topography, and soil moisture.
Sericea lespedeza basal shoot diameter is consistent with other studies (Sidhu 2010); however, bristly locust and smooth sumac had smaller diameters than reported by other authors (Burner and Burke 2012; Francis 2018). Plant age, soil moisture, and soil fertility could have impacted such differences. Browse species with high foliar percentage likely conduce large animal bites without obstruction (Koerth and Stuth 1991). In the current study, smooth sumac had the highest leaf percentage, followed by sericea lespedeza and bristly locust, respectively. Ruminants prefer a diet containing more leaf than stem (Arnold 1981); thus, based on relative abundance of foliage, sericea lespedeza and smooth sumac may be more preferred than bristly locust. However, this cannot be generalized as other factors such as palatability, accessibility, CT concentration, plant growth stage, and animal species play a role in forage consumption (Sanon et al. 2007).
The pistillate spikelets are unique and showy because of their large size, vivid green color and bristly or bottlebrush vestiture. The surface characteristics are due to distinctive curved teeth on the plump perigynia sacs that enclose the female flower parts.
The perigynium is a distinguishing feature of Carex spp. This is a bag-like bract that encloses the pistillate flowers. The sac-like structure persists after fertilization and surrounds the resulting fruit which is a one seeded achene. The perigynia of Carex comosa have unique large curved teeth on the beak. The teeth cause the spikelet to feel like velcro. The related C. hystericina has shorter straight teeth. A third wetland species, C. crinita seems to be bristly but on close inspection the spikelet scales rather than the perigynia have the teeth.
Bristly Dragon ManeClick here for name in other languages.TypeComponentsSub TypeSpecial Breed ComponentCategoryMonster ComponentCostNot for saleSells for9500gMagazineThe Daily Dragon required for dropsA bristly mane from a dragon. A special breed component.
Bristly mallow is a creeping perennial with shiny, light green leaves which alternate on the stem. Bristly mallow will root at nodes along the under side of the stems which appear as knobs. The leaves are similar to Venice mallow, but have more lobes on the leaf: six to seven versus three to five on Venice Mallow. The margin of the leaves is toothed. Bristly mallow has a deep strong taproot. The flower of bristly mallow is an orange-red in color and appears in late spring to early summer. The flower is cup shaped and is located in the junction of the stem and leaf. Bristly mallow spreads by seed and by stoloniferous stems. Bristly mallow is found in the lower Piedmont and coastal plain region of the Southeast, from Virginia to Florida. It can also be found in the gulf states west to Texas.
We are receiving numerous questions regarding insects feeding and completely devouring rose plants. These insects are sawflies, and there are at least two species that attack roses during this time of year: the rose slug (Endelomyia aethiops) and bristly rose slug (Cladius difformis). Rose slugs are the immature or larval stage of sawflies, which are black to yellow colored wasps.
Small infestations of either the rose sawfly or bristly rose slug can be removed by hand and placed into a container of soapy water. A forceful water spray will quickly dislodge sawfly larvae from rose plants and they will not be able to crawl back onto rose plants. There are a number of contact insecticides with various active ingredients that are effective in suppressing populations of both sawflies. However, the bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. kurstaki (sold as Dipel or Thuricide) will have no activity on sawflies as this compound only works on caterpillars.
This plant, which is a member of the daisy family (Asteraceae), takes its name from the coarse bristles covering the majority of the plant and pale thorny pimples covering the surface of the leaves, giving it a very rough, bristly texture when handled or touched.
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Why, I wonder, does the bristly oxtongue have bristles in the first place? Most structures of this kind have developed to deter grazing animals, and I suspect that this is part of the story here too. But why is this plant so well protected, compared to all the hawkbeards and dandelions and sowthistles to which it is so closely related? The only clue that I can find is that unlike many other plants in the family, bristly oxtongue has very sparse sap. Anyone who has snapped the stem of a dandelion knows that it will quickly ooze a prolific and rather unpleasant white latex-like liquid, which is surely unpleasant to eat. Maybe the bristles have developed as a deterrent because the sap alone would not be enough. Who knows? But one thing that I do know is that, although the leaves are ugly to our eyes, the flowers, with their stamen like little calligraphy-squiggles, are a welcome food-source for passing creatures of all kinds, who notice them as even as we pass by without a second glance.
The Bowman Conservation Area is one area where bristly locust grows. Look along the short side trail leading to the amphitheater. This trail branches off the main trail, uphill from the picnic shelter but not far from the parking lot.
Is bristly locust invasive? Apparently not in Massachusetts, although other states such as New Jersey and Pennsylvania consider it invasive. Its habit of spreading underground and sending up suckers makes it useful in stabilizing slopes, but the same habit can also make it hard to control. Perhaps our acidic soil helps to keep it in check in eastern Massachusetts.
Both bristly locust and black locust are toxic to humans and livestock, but the Cherokee Indians of the southeastern U.S. used them in similar ways as medicine. They chewed root bark to bring on vomiting. For toothaches, they pounded a root and held it on the painful tooth. They also used the wood of bristly locust for bows, blowgun darts, and pegs for houses.
Thanks to all these arrangements, bristly locust can thrive in poor soils. Farmers can grow other legumes, such as clover (Trifolium), to plow under and improve the soil, or rotate legume crops such as soybeans with grain crops such as corn. Native Americans could grow beans and corn together and avoid wearing out the soil.
The economic value and chemical complexities of legumes might help you appreciate bristly locust when you find it in the woods. But you can simply enjoy watching the insects that come to this prickly escaped shrub. Notice the bumblebees visiting the flowers. You may not see it, but their undersides get covered with pollen when they land. 2b1af7f3a8