Introduced. Annual or biennial. Propagates by seed.

Time of bloom: May to September.

Seed-time: June to October.

Range: Ontario to British Columbia, southward to North Carolina, Nebraska, and Utah.

Habitat: Cultivated ground, lawns and yards, roadsides, and waste places.

This plant is frequently troublesome in lawns and its seeds are too often an impurity of the mixed grass seeds sold for making such green turf. Its seed capsules open elas-tically, scattering its progeny for several feet; lawn-mowers also help in its distribution, and soon the grass begins to be "run out" by the weed, especially when the turf is rather thin and the soil in need of enrichment. (Fig. 181.)

It has a slender taproot, fringed with thready rootlets. Stem three inches to a foot or more in length, branching from the base, spreading or prostrate, softly hairy. Leaves rounded or kidney-shaped in outline but deeply five- to seven-lobed, the segments toothed at the tips, finely downy-hairy. Flowers in pairs, on short peduncles in the axils or opposite to them, about a quarter-inch broad, pinkish purple, the five petals notched at their edges; five sepals, nearly as long as the petals, sharp-pointed but without awns; stamens five; the five united, persistent styles form the "crane's-bill," which tips the fivecelled ovary and splits from the base when ripe. Seeds two in each cavity, very small, smooth, slightly flattened, reddish brown.

Fig. 181.   Small flowered Crane's bill (Geranium pusillum). X 1/2.

Fig. 181. - Small-flowered Crane's-bill (Geranium pusillum). X 1/2.

Means Of Control

Prevent seed development. The best way of ridding a lawn of this intruder is to fill a common machine oil-can with crude carbolic acid and squirt a few drops directly on the crown of the root as soon as the first small, pink blossoms make it noticeable among the grass. Or it may be cut from the root with a knife or a small spud.