Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Spiny Cocklebur - Xanthium spinosum   L.
Members of Asteraceae:
Members of Xanthium with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Asterales » Family Asteraceae
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DistributionThree specimens are known: Eastern North Carolina in 1885, Henderson County in 1941, and Hyde County in 1952.

Native of South America (?); in N.A. scattered essentially throughout.
AbundanceVery rare.
HabitatWaste ground, farmyard near Lake Mattamuskeet (Hyde Co.).
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting July-November.
IdentificationThis cocklebur has narrow leaves with 2 basal lobes and a sharp tip, strongly whitened beneath. Sharp straw-colored spines grow in 3's at the stem nodes. The burs grow also at the nodes, usually singly. The leaves are very dark green with noticeably white midribs; that and the long spines quickly impart a distinctive look, very unlike our native species (which, to be honest, appear as non-natives in weedy habitats!).
Taxonomic Comments
Other Common Name(s)
State RankSE
Global RankGNR
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US Status
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