This section is from the book "A Manual Of Weeds", by Ada E. Georgia. Also available from Amazon: A Manual Of Weeds.
Native. Perennial. Propagates by seeds.
Time of bloom: June to August.
Seed-time: July to September.
Range: Newfoundland to Ontario, Minnesota, and Nebraska, southward to Missouri and the Carolinas. Habitat: Alluvial ground; fence rows, thickets along streams.
A vexation to the wool-grower in the autumn, when the vines have matured and become brittle; broken bits of the square, hooked stems work into and cling to the fleeces of the sheep, often transporting whole clusters of the seeds to new ground, from which the plants are difficult to dislodge because of their perennial roots.
Stems two to six feet long, branching from the base, weak and reclining on bushes and other plants, clinging by means of downward-curving bristles on the stem angles. Leaves usually about an inch long, whorled in fives or sixes or occasionally in fours, oblongspatulate, bristle-pointed, the margins and midribs also bristly with short, stiff hairs. Flowers similar to the preceding species in structure, white, minute but very numerous, in open cymose clusters at the ends of the many branches and in the upper axils. The twin fruits are smooth.
Fig. 277.-Goose-grass or Cleavers (Galium Aparine).
Hand-pull the vines when in first bloom. If the patches are not too numerous, it will pay to grub out the roots and save further trouble.