Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Venus'-comb - Scandix pecten-veneris   L.Only member of Scandix in NC.
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Section 6 » Order Apiales » Family Apiaceae
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DistributionRecorded from the Piedmont only, in Durham, Iredell, Mecklenburg, and Wake counties. Collections range from 1944-1979.

Native of Mediterranean Europe; in N.A. from MA to Ont. south to FL and MS; TX; KS; Sask.; B.C. to CA and AZ.
AbundanceVery rare.
HabitatFields, fallow fields, campus weed, granitic outcrop (Rolesville, Wake Co.).
PhenologyFlowering March-April; fruiting April-June.
IdentificationThis is a rather low-growing, often spreading herb reaching about 1-1.5 feet tall and wider, somewhat confusing to identify until in fruit. It is best known by its feathery-dissected foliage and its long, skinny fruits that stand straight up; these fruits can reach 2 inches long, making such a plant impossible to overlook or misidentify. The umbels are otherwise small, with a few white flowers, the outer ones often much larger.
Taxonomic Comments
Other Common Name(s)Commonly named as Shepherd's-needle, but Bidens alba is most often known as Shepherd's-needles (plural). However, these names are so very close as to cause confusion, and one of them must have a different common name on this website. RAB (1968) used only Venus'-comb, and Weakley (2018) uses that as his first common name.
State RankSE
Global RankGNR
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