Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Marijuana - Cannabis sativa   L.
Members of Cannabaceae:
Only member of Cannabis in NC.
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Section 6 » Order Urticales » Family Cannabaceae
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DistributionScattered across most of the state, but with large gaps. No doubt many other populations have been seen but not considered as escapes (i.e., considered to have been deliberated planted, almost always in secretive, out-of-the-way places).

Native of Asia; in N.A. Que. to Ont. and ND, south to NC and OK.
AbundanceRare as an escape from cultivation. Populations are often well-hidden, so that this species is under-collected.
HabitatCrop fields, roadside ditch, cutover woods, creek floodplain, campus shrubbery, small openings in forests.
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting June-October.
IdentificationMarijuana is familiar to most people as a tall to very tall, rangey herbaceous plant with leaves deeply palmately divided into 3-9 serrate, tapered leaflets. Be careful if and when you stumble onto a plant or a population; you don't want to be spotted by the person who planted them. Certainly if you see a sizable number of plants, you should contact authorities -- assuming you were on public or otherwise protected private property.
Taxonomic Comments
Other Common Name(s)
State RankSE
Global RankGNR
State Status
US Status
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