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Verbesina alternifolia

Pronunciation: ver-bes-SIGH-nuh al-tern-ee-FOH-lee-uh
Family: Asteraceae
Synonym: Actinomeris alternifolia
Common Name: Wingstem
Plant Type:
  • perennial
Height to: 3-8ft (.91-2.43m)
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • -10 to -20ºF ZONE 5
  • 0 to -10ºF ZONE 6
  • 10 to 0ºF ZONE 7
  • 20 to 10ºF ZONE 8
Sun Exposure:
  • part sun
  • full sun
Bloom Season:
  • late summer
  • early autumn
Bloom Description: Wingstem (Verbesina alternifolia) bear a dome-shaped panicle of flowerheads. These flowerheads have a daisy-like structure and a ragged appearance. Each flowerhead is about 1-2in across, consisting of numerous disk florets that are surrounded by 2-10 yellow ray florets. The petaloid rays are yellow and oblong in shape; they usually extend downward and outward.
Soil Type: Moist to mesic conditions. Wingstem typically grows in fertile soil that is high in organic matter
Pests and Diseases: Foliar disease, such as powdery mildew, occasionally damage the leaves, particularly when a plant is under stress.
Propagation: Sow Wingstem (Verbesina alternifolia) seeds with stratification for germination.
Native to: US
Winter Sowing Zones: Zones 4-8
Notes for Identification:

Wingstem (Verbesina alternifolia) is a tall and unbranched perennial. The central stem is erect and unbranched, except near the apex where the inflorescence occurs. It is usually winged, with long white hairs between the ridges. On rare occasions, the central stem lacks wings. The alternate leaves are up to 10in long and 2½in across; they taper gradually to petiole-like bases. The leaves are elliptic or lanceolate in shape; their margins are smooth, slightly serrated, or sparsely dentate. The upper surface of the leaves is medium green or olive-green and its texture is rough. The lower surface of the leaves is light green with white hairs along the major veins.

Habitat: Verbesina alternifolia (Wingstem) habitats include moist prairies, moist meadows near rivers and woodlands, woodland openings, woodland borders, floodplain forests, areas adjacent to woodland paths, thickets, savannas, partially shaded seeps, partially shaded areas along rivers, pastures, abandoned fields, and roadside ditches. This plant usually doesn't wander far from woodland areas or bodies of water. The deciduous woodlands where this plant occurs often contain such moisture-loving trees as American Sycamore, American Elm, Hackberry, and Silver Maple. Wingstem competes well against other plants in both high quality and disturbed habitats.

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

USDA Heat Zones (days above 86ºF):
  • 14 to 30 days ZONE 4
  • 30 to 45 days ZONE 5
  • 45 to 60 days ZONE 6
  • 60 to 90 days ZONE 7
  • 90 to 120 days ZONE 8
Seed photo: 0
Seed Label: 0
Located in: Perennials
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