Galium obtusum Bigelow - Wild Madder


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Galium obtusum - (image 1 of 3)



Family: Rubiaceae


Moist meadows, moist calcareous areas, prairies. This one was found in a clearing in low woods.


In moist meadows it occurs with Calamagrostis canadensis, Carex stricta, Cicuta maculata, Convolvulus sepium, Thelypteris palustris, Erigeron philadelphicus, Iris virginiana, Phlox glaberrima, Pycnanthemum virginiana, Spartina pectinata, Thalictrum dasycarpum. It was also found growing with Spiraea alba and Toxicodendron rydbergii.




A low herbaceous perennial. Leaves elliptic-oblong to oblong-lanceolate, up to 3cm long, usually blunt at the apex, in whorls of 4, variously hispid or scabrous. Flowers white, corolla lobes 4, 1 to 3 per peduncle in scattered inflorescences. Fruits smooth or smoothish, 2mm or more in diameter.


Flowers late May to early August

Wetland indicator: Facultative wetland+

The leaves of this and other bedstraws cling tightly to clothing. The most common species is annual bedstraw, G. aparine.


Swink, F. and G. Wilhelm. 1994. Plants of the Chicago Region.
Indiana Academy of Science. The Morton Arboretum. Lisle, Illinois.



 Michael Hough 2004