Nodding Bur Marigold: From the Plant and Flower Alphabet


Nodding Bur Marigold

This annual plant is ½–3′ tall, branching sparingly. The central stem is glabrous and occasionally angular. The opposite leaves are up to 5″ long and 1″ across, although usually smaller in size. They are linear-oblong to lanceolate-ovate, serrated along the margins, and hairless. These leaves are never lobed nor pinnately compound. At the base, the pairs of opposite leaves clasp the stem and nearly surround it (i.e., they’re nearly connate), or they are sessile.

The upper stems terminate in flowerheads about ½–1½” across. These flowerheads have a tendency to nod downward with age and the central head of disk florets becomes larger and more rounded. The corolla of each disk floret is yellow and narrowly tubular with 5 lobes. There are about 8 ray florets surrounding the disk florets, but sometimes they lack petaloid rays. When they are present, the petaloid rays are bright yellow and oblong-elliptic in shape; they are variable in length, depending on the local ecotype.

Nodding Bur Marigold from the Granite Bay Graphic Design Plant and Flower Alphabet

Engravings from “Handbook of Plant and Floral Ornament from Early Herbals” by Richard G. Hatton (Originally published in 1909).
Plant descriptions primarily from Wikipedia.