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Solanum rostratum

Solanum rostratum
buffalo bur
Solanum rostratum

Common name buffalo bur
Family solanaceae
Life cycle annual
Flowers yellow (summer-fall)
Size 12-24"
Light sun-part shade
From seed germinate at room temperature, or slightly warmer
detailed seed-starting info below

Wildflower of the U.S. plains states, where it is a tough weed, especially in pasture land. I'm growing it once, just to observe its habit, since I've taken an interest in spiny solanums in general. A reader of that page suggested I give this one a try, and was kind enough to send me some seed. After reading some further online references, I'm pretty sure I don't want it in the garden in the long run, but I can manage anything for a year. The seedlings looked kind of neat, but by late July my sole surviving plant was looking decidedly scraggly, probably due to attack by the flea beetles that plague many solanums in our garden. The droughty conditions that continued through August kept me out of the garden, so I was pleasantly surprised to see it had not just survived but sprang back into growth by early September, with attractive yellow flowers. Fruit set came later in the month, and it was indeed impressively spiny!

We left this plant behind in our Pennsylvania garden (and wish it well); we don't grow it in Houston.

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Seed-starting details for this plant

  1. Seed from '09 trade. Baggy 75F (39%G, 6-12d)

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