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Bidens alba (Beggarticks)

Common Beggarticks, Shepherd's Needles, Spanish Needles, Butterfly Needles, Hairy Beggarticks, Romerillo

Bidens alba, Smooth Beggartick, Common Beggarticks, Shepherd's Needles, Spanish Needles, Butterfly Needles, Hairy Beggarticks, Romerillo
Bidens alba, Smooth Beggartick, Common Beggarticks, Shepherd's Needles, Spanish Needles, Butterfly Needles, Hairy Beggarticks, Romerillo
Bidens alba, Smooth Beggartick, Common Beggarticks, Shepherd's Needles, Spanish Needles, Butterfly Needles, Hairy Beggarticks, Romerillo

Bidens alba (Beggarticks) is an erect annual or short-lived perennial with opposite, simple, or trifoliate, dark green leaves and a profusion of white daisies on long stalks. Blooming all year round, with a peak from spring to fall, the small blossoms feature 4-5 long and broad white petals surrounding many tubular yellow disc florets. They are wonderful for attracting pollinators. Beggarticks is a larval host for the Dainty Sulphur butterfly and a favorite nectar source for a myriad of butterflies. In Florida, it is the third most common source of nectar for honey production. The flowers give way to barbed achenes that stick to clothing, hair, and animal fur. Beggarticks is native to Florida, South America, and the West Indies, where it grows in disturbed areas, such as on roadsides and in pastures. It is particularly abundant in open and sandy areas. It is suitable for casual settings and wildflower gardens. Its young leaves and flowers are edible.

  • Grows up to 1-3 ft. tall and wide(30-90 cm). Will self-sow generously and be quite weedy.
  • Performs best in full sun in dry, well-drained sandy soils to rich, moist soils.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • Pull this plant before it goes to seed to prevent it from taking over your garden.
  • Propagate by seed (no treatment). A single plant can produce up to 6,000 barbed seeds dispersed by wind and water, often adhering to clothing, feathers, and fur.
  • Native to Florida, South America, and the West Indies. It has been introduced to the Pacific region and is now naturalized on many islands.

Requirements

Hardiness 8 - 11
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Plant Family Compositae
Common names Butterfly Needles
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 1' - 3'
(30cm - 90cm)
Spread 1' - 3'
(30cm - 90cm)
Spacing 12" - 36"
(30cm - 90cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Southeast, Midwest, Northeast, Missouri, Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Georgia
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 8 - 11
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Plant Family Compositae
Common names Butterfly Needles
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 1' - 3'
(30cm - 90cm)
Spread 1' - 3'
(30cm - 90cm)
Spacing 12" - 36"
(30cm - 90cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Southeast, Midwest, Northeast, Missouri, Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Georgia
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?

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