Two to six feet high. Stem. - Branching. Leaves. - Opposite, three to five-divided. Flower-heads. - Consisting of brownish-yellow tubular flowers, with a leaf-like involucre beneath.
If one were only describing the attractive wild flowers, the stick-tight would certainly be omitted, as its appearance is not prepossessing, and the small barbed seed-vessels so cleverly fulfil their destiny in making one's clothes a means of conveyance to "fresh woods and pastures new" as to cause all wayfarers heartily to detest them. " How surely the desmodium growing on some cliff-side, or the bidens on the edge of a pool, prophesy the coming of the traveller, brute or human, that will transport their seeds on his coat," writes Thoreau. But the plant is so constantly encountered in late summer, and yet so generally unknown, that it can hardly be overlooked.
Plate LVIII. Stick-Tight. - B. frondosa
The larger bur marigold, B. chrysanthemoides, does its best to retrieve the family reputation for ugliness, and surrounds its dingy disk-flowers with a circle of showy golden rays which are strictly decorative, having neither pistils nor stamens, and leaving all the work of the household to the less attractive but more useful disk-flowers. Their effect is pleasing, and late into the autumn the moist ditches look as if sown with gold through their agency. The plant varies in height from six inches to two feet. Its leaves are opposite, lance-shaped, and regularly toothed.