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Stickseeds, Sticktights, Beggar's Lice

Lappula spp. and Hackelia spp.

Boraginaceae (Borage Family)

▲▼ Western Sticktight (Lappula occidentalis) mature, flowering plant

Western Sticktight (Lappula occidentalis) mature, flowering plant

Western Sticktight (Lappula occidentalis) fruit, with single row of hook-like spines around segments

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▲▼ European Sticktight (Lappula squarrosa) Mature, flowering plants

European Sticktight (Lappula squarrosa) flowers

▲▼ European Sticktight (Lappula squarrosa) fruit, with double row of hook-like spines around segments

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▲▼ Beggar's Lice,  Stickseed (Hackelia virginiana) mature, flowering plants

Beggar's Lice,  Stickseed (Hackelia virginiana)sstem showing terminal inflorescence, flowers, fruit and leaves

Beggar's Lice,  Stickseed (Hackelia virginiana) fruit, showing multiple rings of hook-like bracts (almost cuplike) around fruit segments

▲▼ Beggar's Lice,  Stickseed (Hackelia virginiana) lower leaves

Sticktights, Stickseeds: 

         Summer annuals in the Boraginaceae (Borage) family with slender, branched stems growing 6-24+ inches tall

         Leaves often lanceolate, hairy

         Flowers tiny, bluish-white in terminal cymes, followed by oval-rounded fruit with rings of little hook-like spines on them

         Several species:

o   Western Sticktights: 

  Native species has fruit with single row of spines around margins of fruit

  common in western Midwest prairies

o   European sticktights: 

  European species with fruit with 2-3 rows of spines around margins

  More common in northern Midwest

o   Hackelia, Stickseed, Beggar's Lice: 

  Native species with cup-like ring of spines around fruit margins

  Taller growing and shade tolerant; found in tall grass areas, riparian areas, open forests

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