Lithospermum canescens (Michx.) Lehm. - Hoary Puccoon


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Lithospermum canescens - (image 1 of 7)



Family: Boraginaceae


 Prairies, hill prairies. Uncultivated sandy soils.


In prairies with Amorpha canescens, Aster azureus, Cirsium discolor, Comandra umbellata, Convolvulus sepium, Dodecatheon meadia, Erygium yuccifolium, Euphorbia corollata, Heruchera richardsonii, Hypoxis hirsuta, Lespedeza capitata, Lobelia spicata, Panicum virgatum, Pedicularis canadensis, Petalostemum purpureum, Phlox pilosa fulgida, Rudbeckia hirta, Silphium laciniatum, Silphium terebinthinaceum, Sisyrinchium albidum, Sporobolis heterolepis, Stipa spartea. Tradescantia ohiensis, Zizia aurea.




Herbaceous perennial. Leaves narrowly lanceolate to oblong or elliptic-oblong or ovate, the larger averaging more than 5mm wide, canescent with fine, downy, appressed hairs. Flowers yellow to orange; calyx lobes less than 8mm long; corolla lobes entire; corolla tubes exceeding the calyx lobes, interior surface of corolla tubes glabrous throughout. Fruit a white, shiny nutlet, up to 3mm long, without a basal collar and not pitted.


Flowers early April to late July.

Wetland indicator: Upland

I have trouble separating this species from L. croceum. They are both said to occur where I photographed these plants, so they could be of either or both. At any rate they are quite floriferous.  


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




 Michael Hough 2005