Range: Newfoundland and Hudson Bay to North Carolina, Michigan, and South Dakota. Also on the Pacific Coast. Habitat: Gardens and cultivated fields, waste places.
In Europe, whence this plant came to us, it is often sown to furnish green food for cage birds and for poultry. In this country it is frequently a great vexation to the truck gardener, for in fertile soil it sometimes appears in such quantities as to smother all other seedlings.
Stem six to fifteen inches high, succulent, hollow, slightly angled, much branched, and leafy to the top. Leaves oblong, pinnatifid, the segments also oblong and toothed; the lower ones taper backward to a petiole, but those of the stem are clasping and somewhat auricled. Flower-heads yellow, without rays, about a quarter-inch broad, the bracts of the involucre linear, with a few awl-shaped outer ones which are black-tipped. Achenes oblong, finely ribbed, minutely hairy, with a very copious, fine, white pappus, by help of which they are widely wind-sown.
Frequent hoe-cutting while the plants are too young to develop seed. A spray of four-per-cent Copper-sulfate solution will blast buds and temporarily check seed development, but will not harm the smooth foliage, so that the plant recovers and the operation requires to be repeated.