[Leucacantha cyanus (L.) Nieuwl. & Lunell]
Etymology: Centaurea: ancient Greek plant-name, poetically associated with Chiron, the Centaur, but without wholly satisfactory explanation
Plants: erect, annual, 8"-48" tall forb covered with whitish hairs when young
Leaves: usually undivided, linear, less than 1/3" wide, larger ones possibly with a few lobes
Flowers: head 1/2"-1" wide with blue to purple disk flowers, bracts (phyllaries) lined with darkish fringed "eyelashes" near the tip; inflorescence a solitary head at the ends of the many branches
Habitat: disturbed sites
Conservation Status: Introduced - escaped
Flora of North America: Flora of North America USDA Plants Database: Federal Distribution and detailed information including photos USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS): Images of seeds, fruits, embryos, etc. Dan Tenaglia's The Missouri Flora: Fabulous photographs; detailed descriptions; color and leave arrangement key.