Schkuhria pinnata (Lam.) Kuntze

feathery false threadleaf

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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

Feathery false threadleaf ranges from Arizona and New Mexico through the South American Andes, and is rarely encountered in New England (collected in Massachusetts). The plant is valued for its antibiotic and cleansing properties by the Kitchua of Bolivia, and has been shown to have anticancer activity in clinical trials.

Habitat

Anthropogenic (man-made or disturbed habitats)

Characteristics

Habitat
terrestrial
New England state
Massachusetts
Leaf type
leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
Leaf arrangement
opposite: there are two leaves per node along the stem
Leaf blade edges
the edge of the leaf blade has lobes, or it has both teeth and lobes
Flower type in flower heads
the flower head has disk flowers only, and lacks the strap-shaped flowers
Ray flower color
  • NA
  • white
  • yellow
Tuft or plume on fruit
there is no plume, or the plume is made up of scales, awns, a crown, or a rim
Spines on plant
the plant has no spines
Leaf blade length
10–40 mm
Disk flower number
  • 1-5
  • 6-10
Show All Characteristics
  • Flowers
    Bases of bract appendages
    NA
    Bract color
    the bracts are not colored or tinged with pink, red or purple
    Bract cycle number
    there are two main cycles of bracts
    Bract keels
    there is one distinct keel on the bracts
    Bract outer side hair type
    the bracts are not hairy on their outer surface
    Bract outer side hairs
    the bracts are not hairy on their outer surfaces
    Bract separation
    the bracts appear completely unconnected to one another on all flower heads
    Bract shape
    • the main bracts are oblanceolate (widest near the tip, but otherwise narrow and tapering)
    • the main bracts are obovate (roughly egg-shaped, but widest near the tip)
    Bract spines
    the bracts have no spines
    Bract tip color
    the tips are a different color from the center of the bract
    Bract tip extension appearance
    NA
    Bract tip extension edge
    NA
    Bract tip orientation
    the bracts are pressed against the plant, or spreading out at the tips
    Bract tip shape
    the tips of the bracts are obtuse (have a blunt point)
    Bracts
    there are at least two distinct forms of bracts in different cycles
    Disk flower color
    • pink to red
    • yellow
    Disk flower lobe number
    5
    Disk flower number
    • 1-5
    • 6-10
    Disk flower reproductive parts
    the disk flower has both pollen- and seed-producing parts
    Disk flower shape
    the disk flower is tube-shaped (cylindrical), or gradually widening like a funnel
    Flower head number
    each flowering stem has four or more flower heads on it
    Flower head outer flowers
    • at the outer edge of the flower head, each flower has a single enlarged lobe or strap
    • at the outer edge of the flower head, the flowers have no enlarged lobe or strap, and are of similar size as those in the center of the disk
    Flower head platform
    the base has no bristles or papery scales
    Flower head platform surface
    NA
    Flower head position
    each of the flower heads is separate on its own peduncle (stalk), not clustered in groups
    Flower head profile
    the disk is rounded across the top
    Flower head shape
    • NA
    • the sides of the flower head are roughly parallel, like a cylinder
    Flower type in flower heads
    the flower head has disk flowers only, and lacks the strap-shaped flowers
    Height of flower head base
    4–6 mm
    Inflorescence branching (Solidago)
    NA
    Inflorescence shape
    • the inflorescence is flat-topped in profile
    • the inflorescence is not flat-topped but appears rounded, with some flower heads distinctly higher than others
    Inflorescence stem
    hairs are present on the stem of the inflorescence
    Number of bracts at flower head base
    4–6
    Ovary cross-section
    the ovary is roughly square or with four corners
    Ovary hair type
    the ovary has hairs on it, but the hairs have no glands
    Ovary hairs
    the ovary has hairs on it
    Ovary profile
    in profile, the ovary is another shape
    Peduncle hair type
    the hairs on the peduncles appear tangled or woolly
    Peduncle hairs
    the peduncles are hairy
    Peduncle length
    3–30 mm
    Peduncle orientation
    the flower heads are held upright, or slightly angled outwards
    Ray flower color
    • NA
    • white
    • yellow
    Ray flower reproductive parts
    the ray flowers have carpels or stamens, but not both
    Ray flowers
    • 0
    • 1-5
    Ray length
    0.8–1.2 mm
    Reproductive system
    some of the flowers on the plant have only carpels or stamens, while others have both carpels and stamens
    Scale tip
    NA
    Style branch number
    the style has two branches
    Width of flower head base
    3–4 mm
  • Fruits or seeds
    Number of pappus parts
    8
    Ovary length in developed fruit
    3–4 mm
    Seed hair tuft bases
    NA
    Seed hair tuft color
    NA
    Seed hair tuft details
    NA
    Seed hair tuft tips
    NA
    Seed hairs uniform
    NA
    Seed tuft scale number
    8
    Seed tuft type
    the pappus is made of flat scales that are not split or frayed at the tips
    Top of disk flower ovary
    NA
    Tuft or plume on fruit
    there is no plume, or the plume is made up of scales, awns, a crown, or a rim
  • Glands or sap
    Bract resin
    the bracts have resin or resin glands
    Leaf blade glands
    the leaf blades have glandular (translucent) dots or scales
    Ovary glands
    there are no visible glands on the ovary
    Sap
    the sap is clear and watery
  • Growth form
    Growth form
    the plant has one or more free-standing stems
    Plant lifespan
    the plant is annual, it lacks evidence of previous years' growth
    Spines on plant
    the plant has no spines
  • Leaves
    Hairs on underside of leaf blade
    the underside of the leaf is fuzzy or hairy
    Hairs on upper side of leaf blade
    the upper side of the leaf is fuzzy or hairy
    Leaf arrangement
    opposite: there are two leaves per node along the stem
    Leaf blade base
    • the leaf has a distinct petiole
    • the leaf has no petiole
    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 bloom
    NA
    Leaf blade edges
    the edge of the leaf blade has lobes, or it has both teeth and lobes
    Leaf blade hairs
    the leaf blade has hairs with glands at their tips
    Leaf blade length
    10–40 mm
    Leaf blade shape
    the leaf blade is linear (very narrow with more or less parallel sides)
    Leaf blade tip
    • the tip of the leaf blade is acute (sharply pointed)
    • the tip of the leaf blade is obtuse (bluntly pointed)
    Leaf blade veins
    the leaf blade has one main vein running from the base towards the tip
    Leaf disposition
    the leaves are nearly similar in size, prominence of teeth, and length of stalks throughout the stem
    Leaf spines
    there are no spines on the leaf edges
    Leaf stalk
    • the leaves have leaf stalks
    • the leaves have no leaf stalks, but attach directly to the stem
    Leaf type
    leaves are simple (i.e., lobed or unlobed but not separated into leaflets)
    Specific leaf type
    the leaf has a row of two or more lobes on each side of the central axis
  • Place
    Habitat
    terrestrial
    New England state
    Massachusetts
    Specific habitat
    man-made or disturbed habitats
  • Stem, shoot, branch
    Flowering stem cross-section
    the flowering stem is circular, or with lots of small angles
    Leaves on stem
    there is at least one full leaf above the base of the flowering stem
    Stem internode hair direction
    the hairs point mostly upwards to outwards
    Stem internode hairs
    • the stem has hairs between the nodes
    • the stem has no hairs between the nodes
    Stem wings
    the stem does not have wings on it

Wetland Status

Not classified

New England Distribution and Conservation Status

Distribution

Connecticut
absent
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.

Massachusetts
unranked (S-rank: SNR)

Native to North America?

Yes and no (some introduced)

Sometimes Confused With

Dyssodia papposa:
capitula with usually 5-8 ray flowers, involucral bracts sometimes with red to purple pigmentation and then this color usually uniformly distributed throughout except sometimes on the midrib, and pappus scales monomorphic and divided at the apex into bristles (vs. S. pinnata, with capitula with 0-2 ray flowers, involcural bracts sometimes with red to purple pigmentation and then this color usually restricted to the apex and margins, and pappus scales dimorphic and not divided at the apex).

Synonyms

  • Pectis pinnata Lam.

Family

Asteraceae

Genus

Schkuhria

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Information from Dichotomous Key of Flora Novae Angliae

1.  Schkuhria pinnata (Lam.) Kuntze var. pinnata E

feathery false threadleaf. Pectis pinnata Lam. • MA. Waste areas, gardens. Strother (2006f) noted that this species has persisted after planting in ME; however, specimens documenting incipient naturalization are unknown.