Illinois tick-trefoil, prairie tick-trefoil
[Meibomia illinoensis (A.Gray) Kuntze]
Etymology: Desmodium: Greek meaning "long branch or chain," probably from the shape and the way the seedpods attach
Plants: erect, perennial, up to 3' tall forb
Leaves: 3-parted, lance-like, both sides rough with hooked hairs; leaf stalk much longer than the stalk of the end leaflet
Flowers: white to pink, 5-parted, 1/3" long, stalks about 1/2" long; inflorescence a sparsely-flowered, long cluster (raceme) either with none or only a few branches; blooms July-Aug.
Fruits: flat, mostly straight pod covered with clinging, hooked hairs and divided into 2-5 rounded segments
Habitat: sun; dry to moderate moisture; prairies, roadsides; in rich soil
Conservation Status: Native
Floristic Rating: Coefficient of Conservatism = 7 Atlas of the Wisconsin Prairie and Savanna Flora: by T.S. Cochrane & H.H. Iltis: habitat, distribution infomation / flowering and fruiting times USDA Plants Database: Federal Distribution and detailed information including photos Illinois Wildflowers: Wonderful photographs; detailed descriptions; color and leaf arrangement key Southwest School of Botanical Medicine: Britton & Brown Illustrated Flora - 2nd Edition (1913) "An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada"