Muck Sunflower - African Daisy
Helianthus simulans
Asteraceae (Composite Sunflower) Family

Plant is a tall, upright perennial with reddish stems and numerous bright yellow flower heads. Preferred habitat is bogs and swamps, wet thickets, meadows and the margin of pine forests. Distribution is throughout the Escambia region.

Leaves are three to eight inches long, mostly alternate on the stem, but may be opposite upwards, rough to the touch, lance-like, sharply long-pointed, finely toothed with leaf base being wedge-shaped or graduating to a narrow point. Leaf stalks are short or nearly sessile (stalkless).

Flowers are many, about three inches wide, with 10-20 rays and numerous reddish/brown disc flowers. Bracts supporting the flower heads are narrow, thin and dark green. Ray flowers are symmetrical in shape, female and yellow. Disc flowers are bisexual and reddish/brown in color.

Fruit is a seed whose outer layer is fused to it (achene).

The Latin means that the plant is “similar to others but different, sham, copy.” This sunflower is often referred to as "rudbeckia" but it actually has no relation to the species aside from being in the same family and tribe.

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