Argemone albiflora Hornem.

white prickly-poppy

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New England Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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North America Distribution

Adapted from BONAP data

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Facts About

Non-native populations of White prickly-poppy have been collected in Connecticut and Massachusetts. This robust member of the poppy family produces white flowers atop bristly stems. Like other poppies, the plant has a yellowish sap that darkens upon drying. Its bluish-green leaves are similarly bristly, resembling thistle leaves.

Habitat

Anthropogenic (man-made or disturbed habitats), meadows and fields

Characteristics

Habitat
terrestrial
New England state
  • Connecticut
  • Massachusetts
Flower petal color
white
Leaf type
the leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
Leaf arrangement
alternate: there is one leaf per node along the stem
Leaf blade edges
  • the edge of the leaf blade has lobes, or it has both teeth and lobes
  • the edge of the leaf blade has teeth
Flower symmetry
there are two or more ways to evenly divide the flower (the flower is radially symmetrical)
Number of sepals, petals or tepals
there are five petals, sepals, or tepals in the flower
Fusion of sepals and petals
  • both the petals and sepals are separate and not fused
  • the petals or the sepals are fused into a cup or tube
Stamen number
13 or more
Fruit type (general)
the fruit is dry and splits open when ripe
Fruit length
20–45 mm
Show All Characteristics
  • Clonal plantlets
    Bulbils
    the plant does not appear to have bulbils
    Bulblets replace flowers
    there are no bulblets where the flowers are located
  • Flowers
    Anther spurs
    the anthers do not have spurs on them
    Carpels fused
    the carpels are fused to one another
    Cleistogamous flowers
    there are no cleistogamous flowers on the plan
    Corolla palate
    no
    Corona lobe length
    0 mm
    Epicalyx
    the flower does not have an epicalyx
    Epicalyx number of parts
    0
    Flower description
    the flower has a superior ovary, and lacks a hypanthium
    Flower petal color
    white
    Flower reproductive parts
    the flower has both pollen- and seed-producing parts
    Flower symmetry
    there are two or more ways to evenly divide the flower (the flower is radially symmetrical)
    Flowers sunken into stem
    no
    Form of style
    the style is unbranched, but it has two or more narrow appendages that are part of the stigma
    Fusion of sepals and petals
    • both the petals and sepals are separate and not fused
    • the petals or the sepals are fused into a cup or tube
    Horns in hoods (Asclepias)
    NA
    Hypanthium
    the flower does not have a hypanthium
    Inner tepals (Rumex)
    NA
    Nectar spur
    the flower has no nectar spurs
    Number of carpels
    3–7
    Number of pistils
    1
    Number of sepals, petals or tepals
    there are five petals, sepals, or tepals in the flower
    Number of styles
    1
    Ovary position
    the ovary is above the point of petal and/or sepal attachment
    Petal and sepal arrangement
    the flower includes two cycles of petal- or sepal-like structures
    Petal and sepal colors
    white
    Petal appearance
    the petals are thin and delicate, and pigmented (colored other than green or brown)
    Petal folding in bud
    the petals in bud are crumpled erratically
    Petal hairs (Viola)
    NA
    Petal nectaries
    the petals do not have nectaries
    Petal number
    4–6
    Petal tips (Cuscuta)
    NA
    Scales inside corolla
    no
    Sepal and petal color
    the sepals are different from the petals
    Sepal appendages
    the sepals do not have appendages on them
    Sepal appendages (Oenothera)
    NA
    Sepal features
    one or more sepals have a horn-like (hardened) appendage
    Sepal number
    2–3
    Stamen attachment
    the stamens are not attached to the petals or tepals
    Stamen number
    13 or more
    Stamen position relative to petals
    NA
    Stamens fused
    the stamens are not attached to one another
    Staminodes
    there are no staminodes on the flower
    Style petal-like
    the styles are not petal-like
    Umbel flower reproductive parts
    NA
    Upper lip of bilabiate corolla
    NA
  • Fruits or seeds
    Achene relative orientation
    NA
    Achene shape
    NA
    Achene surface (Polygonum)
    NA
    Achene type
    NA
    Berry color
    NA
    Capsule color (Viola)
    NA
    Fruit (pyxis) dehiscence
    NA
    Fruit features (Brassicaceae)
    NA
    Fruit length
    20–45 mm
    Fruit locules
    one
    Fruit shape
    • the fruit is ellipsoid (widest in the middle and tapering to each end)
    • the fruit is obloid (longer than wide and with rounded ends)
    Fruit type (general)
    the fruit is dry and splits open when ripe
    Fruit type (specific)
    the fruit is a capsule (splits along two or more seams, apical teeth or pores when dry, to release two or more seeds)
    Legumes (Fabaceae)
    NA
    Mericarp length
    0 mm
    Mericarp segment shape (Desmodium)
    NA
    Other markings on berry
    NA
    Ovary stipe
    the ovary or fruit does not have a stipe
    Placenta arrangement
    the plant has parietal placentation, where ovules develop on the wall or slight outgrowths of the wall forming broken partitions within a compound ovary
    Rows of seeds in fruit (Brassicaceae)
    NA
    Schizocarpic fruit compression
    NA
    Schizocarpic fruit segments
    0
    Septum in fruit (Brassicaceae)
    NA
    Wings on fruit
    the fruit does not have wings on it
    prickles on fruits
    the fruits are armed with thorns-like defensive structures
  • Glands or sap
    Glands on leaf blade
    the leaf blades do not have glandular dots or scales
    Sap
    the sap is milky and opaque, and may be white or colored
    Sap color
    the sap is clear
  • Growth form
    Growth form
    the plant is an herb (it has self-supporting stems)
    Lifespan
    the plant lives only a single year or less
    Parasitism
    the plant is not parasitic
    Plant color
    the leaves or young stems of the plant are green
    Spines on plant
    there are spines on the plant
    Underground organs
    there is a thickened taproot on the plant
  • Leaves
    Bracteole number (Apiaceae)
    0
    Bracts in plantain (Plantago)
    NA
    Final leaf segment length (compound lvs only)
    0 mm
    Floral bracts
    the flower has one or more bracts associated with it
    Hairs on underside of leaf
    the underside of the leaf is not hairy, or it has very few hairs
    Hairs on upper side of leaf
    the upper side of the leaf is not hairy, or it has very few hairs
    Leaf arrangement
    alternate: there is one leaf per node along the stem
    Leaf blade base
    the leaf has no stalk
    Leaf blade base shape
    the base of the leaf blade is cuneate (wedge-shaped, tapers to the base with relatively straight, converging edges), or narrow
    Leaf blade edges
    • the edge of the leaf blade has lobes, or it has both teeth and lobes
    • the edge of the leaf blade has teeth
    Leaf blade length
    70–200 mm
    Leaf blade shape
    • the leaf blade is lanceolate (lance-shaped; widest below the middle and tapering at both ends)
    • the leaf blade is obovate (egg-shaped, but with the widest point above the middle of the leaf blade)
    Leaf blade surface colors
    the upper side of the leaf blade has obvious spots, mottles or stripes
    Leaf blade width
    20–100 mm
    Leaf duration
    the leaves drop off in winter (or they whither but persist on the plant)
    Leaf form
    the leaves are green, with an expanded blade and a leaf-like texture
    Leaf spines
    there are spines along the leaf edges
    Leaf stalk
    the leaves have no leaf stalks, but attach directly to the stem
    Leaf teeth and lobes
    • the leaf blade margin has outward-pointing teeth
    • the leaf has a row of two or more lobes on each side of the central axis
    Leaf type
    the leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
    Leaf variation
    the leaves are nearly similar in size, prominence of teeth, and length of stalks throughout the stem
    Leaves per node
    there is one leaf per node along the stem
    Specific leaf type
    the leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
    Stipule features
    NA
    Stipules
    there are no stipules on the plant
  • Place
    Habitat
    terrestrial
    New England state
    • Connecticut
    • Massachusetts
    Specific habitat
    • man-made or disturbed habitats
    • meadows or fields
  • Stem, shoot, branch
    Branched tendrils
    NA
    Hair between stem nodes
    the stem has no hairs between the nodes
    Hairs between stem nodes
    • NA
    • the stem has no hairs between the nodes
    Leaves on stem
    there is at least one full leaf above the base of the flowering stem
    Plant height
    40–150 cm
    Stem orientation
    the stems are upright or angled outwards
    Tendril origin
    NA
    Tendrils
    the plant does not have tendrils

Wetland Status

Not classified

New England Distribution and Conservation Status

Distribution

Connecticut
present
Maine
absent
Massachusetts
present
New Hampshire
absent
Rhode Island
absent
Vermont
absent

Conservation Status

Exact status definitions can vary from state to state. For details, please check with your state.

ssp. albiflora

Massachusetts
not applicable (S-rank: SNA)

Native to North America?

Yes and no (some introduced)

Sometimes Confused With

Argemone mexicana:
petals yellow or pale yellow and flowers with 30-50 stamens (vs. A. albiflora, with petals white or rarely tinged with pink and flowers with 100 or more stamens).

Synonyms

  • Argemone alba Lestib.
  • Argemone intermedia Sweet, pro parte
  • Argemone mexicana L. var. albiflora DC.

Family

Papaveraceae

Genus

Argemone

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Information from Dichotomous Key of Flora Novae Angliae

1.  Argemone albiflora Hornem. ssp. albiflora E

white prickly-poppy. Argemone alba Lestib.; A. intermedia Sweet, pro parte; A. mexicana L. var. albiflora DC. • CT, MA. Fields, roadsides, lawns.