Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Blue Ridge Ragwort - Packera millefolium   (Torrey & A. Gray) W.A. Weber & A. Love
Members of Asteraceae:
Members of Packera with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Asterales » Family Asteraceae
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Author(Torrey & A. Gray) W.A. Weber & A. Love
DistributionMiddle and southern Mountains, extending east to the South Mountains in the southwestern Piedmont.

Endemic to southwestern NC, northwestern SC, and northeastern GA; reportedly disjunct to southwestern VA (Lee County), but specimens need careful ID check.
AbundanceUncommon, but routinely found on rocky sites (especially on granitic domes); can be locally common. The NCNHP database lists close to 50 records, though some could be clustered into fewer records. Nonetheless, the website editors feel that a State Rank of S2S3 is reasonable. The species is State Special Concern, perhaps as much for the small range (with NC having most of the records) as opposed to being truly scarce.
HabitatCliffs, rocky slopes, granitic domes, open montane woodlands -- almost always rooted in cracks, crevices, or very shallow soil over rocks.
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting late April - early June.
IdentificationRagworts generally grow 1-2.5 feet tall, with long, sometimes deeply pinnately cut basal leaves that become smaller and sessile upstem. The inflorescence is branched and relatively flat-topped, with golden yellow rays and orange-yellow disks. Distinguishing among the species can be challenging. Note that practically all our species posess cobwebby hairs (tomentose or floccose) on stem bases and leaf axils early in the season. Use any and all keys with care and caution. Blue Ridge Ragwort differs from all by its 2 or 3 times pinnately divided lower leaves (vs. 1-pinnate or entire in all other species). Note: it is known to hybridize with Small's Ragwort (S. anonyma), perhaps another reason this globally scarce species might require staying at a Threatened status despite its many occurrences.
Taxonomic CommentsFormerly named as Senecio millefolium.

Other Common Name(s)Divided-leaf Ragwort, Yarrowleaf Ragwort, Piedmont Ragwort (a very inaccurate name)
State RankS2 [S2S3]
Global RankG3
State StatusSC-V
US Status
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