Woodland Sunflower
Woodland Sunflower - Spreading Sunflower
Helianthus divaricatus - Linnaeus
Asteraceae (Composite Sunflower) Family

Woodland Sunflower is an upright smooth perennial with long rhizomes; 3 to 5 feet tall, branched or unbranched. Its preferred habitat is open pinelands and the edge of swamps and marshes. Distribution is throughout the Escambia region.

The leaves are opposite on the stem, linear to lance-like or oblanceolate; rough above, smooth and resin-dotted below, downy. Each leaf tapers to a long point, and the base is rounded or slightly wedge-shaped. The margins are slightly serrate. Leaf stalks are short.

The flowers are solitary heads at the end of a flowering stem. Bracts supporting the flower appear in several series, lance-like with hairy margins. The ray flowers are yellow, distinctly veined and bisexual in nature. Disk flowers are dark purple, also bisexual in nature and symmetrical in form. Flowers occur in the summer.

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

H. divaricatus is closely related to Jerusalem Artichoke, H. tuberosus, but it does not produce an edible tuber.

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