Melampyrum lineare - Narrowleaf Cow Wheat

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Melampyrum lineare, Narrowleaf Cow Wheat, is a native herbaceous plant that is inconspicuous and low growing, up to about 16". It blooms in the summer.

Flowers

The small flowers are about 0.5 inch, creamy white tubular with pale yellow tips.

Melampyrum lineare - Narrowleaf Cow Wheat - Flower Melampyrum lineare - Narrowleaf Cow Wheat - Flower


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Leaves

There are two types of leaves. The lower leaves are linear. The leaves just below the flowers are more lance shaped have 2-6 projections at the base of the leaves.

Melampyrum lineare - Narrowleaf Cow Wheat -  lower leaf, linear Melampyrum lineare - Narrowleaf Cow Wheat -  upper leaf, projections at base


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Plant & Growth

The plant is hemiparasitic. It is both photosynthetic and parasitic. Its roots can get nutrients from the roots of other plants.

Melampyrum lineare - Narrowleaf Cow Wheat plant


Photos by H & M Ling, 6/22/2013, sandy areas in the pinebarrens, Helmetta and Webbs Mill area, NJ

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Additional information

Additional information / online references:

The USDA website shows its distribution. It is considered rare/threatened in Indiana and Ohio: http://http://plants.usda.gov/core/profile?symbol=MELI2&photoID=meli2_001_avd.tif

GoBotany, New England Wildflower Society: https://gobotany.newenglandwild.org/species/melampyrum/lineare/

Minnesota Wildflowers has good descriptions for identification: https://www.minnesotawildflowers.info/flower/cow-wheat

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