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Vernonia noveboracensis

Common Name of Species: New York Ironweed 
Family: Asteraceae

Entry Author:  C. Friedl, Muhlenberg College
Description:  The deep purple color of the flower heads can persist through the winter, and slender, sessile shaped leaves are the key identifiers of New York ironweed.  Another identifying characteristic of this species is the hair-like tips of the bracts.

Leaves are uniform in size and distribution along stem, 4-8 inches long and ¾ - 1 ½ wide. Finely toothed, lance-shaped with a sharp point that the end.  Tend to be hairless on the top but have soft white hairs on the underside.
Magenta to deep purple flowers grow in 3- 4 inch clusters, with 30-50 flower heads in each cluster.  Flower heads are approximately 3/8 inch wide, each of which is 5 lobed.  Flowers can persist through the winter.
Tall, erect stem, with branching towards the top.   
Branching Pattern of Leaves: Leaves grow alternate to one another. 
3-7 feet tall
Grow in moist, low ground open fields and on stream banks.
Can generally be found in the eastern states of North America, north of New York, and West of Kentucky and West Virginia.

Niering, W.A., Olmstead, N.C, & Thieret, J.W. (2001). National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Wildflowers Eastern Region (Revised Edition).  New York: Random House Inc.

Newcomb, Lawrence (1977).  Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide.  New York: Little, Brown.

McKenny, M. & Peterson R.T. (1996). Peterson Field Guides: Wildflowers Northeastern/ North-central North America. New York: Houghton Mifflin.

USDA, NRCS (2004). Plants Database, Version 3.05 (  National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874 USA.


This page was created by: C. Friedl, Muhlenberg College
Last updated 11/10/05