What weed is this?

naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)July 23, 2012

I have this weed growing all over my yard. I think it's pretty and let one of them get big but still no flowers. I don't want invasive weeds in my yard. Have looked online but can't find it. Does anyone know what it is? Thanks!

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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Here's the one I allowed to get big.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 3:58AM
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loganlady

Ahhh I also have had this wildflower/weed two years now. I have asked around and tried looking myself with no answer. I will also be glad to hear about this plant.

Beca~

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 12:28PM
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fabaceae_native

You'll really have to wait until it flowers to identify it... but it could be one of the many prostrate Amaranthus species. If this is true it will become obvious at flowering.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 1:55PM
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azant(10a)

Something i do know about this weed is, the flowers are small and insignificant (purplish color if i remember correctly), its taproot can get large which makes it a trick to remove. I pull em in my yard as i find em before its too tough down the road. Roundup doesnt seem to do too much when they have some age on em.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 3:09PM
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DWA in AZ Sunset zone 12(9a Tucson AZ)

I think it's trailing Four o'clock

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/71/allionia-incarnata-trailing-windmills/

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 4:04PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Lakedweller, it looks similar but it has hairy leaves and stem and my "weed" is smooth and soft.

Azant, that's what I'm afraid of, that I'm creating a monster by letting the one get big. But, it's pretty to look at and I am so curious to know what plant it is.

Hope someone knows and solves this mystery.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 4:36PM
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tomatofreak(Z9 Phx USA)

By golly, I think you've got it! I have this 'weed', too, and now I have a name for it. It's pretty and, for me, not worth pulling up. Then again, I don't usually pull weeds until they make a complete nuisance of themselves. I have been known to spend hours pulling up burr clover, though; I hate that stuff.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 4:37PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Here's another photo I just took of the big one with me holding it. It keeps getting bigger and longer but still no flowers. If it didn't grow all over my yard I would just leave it alone, it's so pretty and green with no help from me. Wish all desirable garden plants were this easy to grow. LOL

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 5:15PM
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azant(10a)

Look at "careless pigweed" Amaranthus palmeri.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 5:25PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

((Look at "careless pigweed" Amaranthus palmeri.))

I checked it out, but pigweed grows upright, mine is postrate, grows along the ground, something like a vine but it hasn't climbed the cassia and Texas Ranger nearby.

Am looking at "weed ID" websites but many just list the names and no photo, so you have to click on each listing to see the photo.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 6:17PM
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azant(10a)

hmm... maybe Amaranthus graecizans or A. albus?

im curious too as i have been battling this thing for a few years

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 6:37PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Here's a website with photos of all the pigweed species, many of the photos are hard to see, but the leaves seem to have a rough texture whereas mine have soft and shiny leaves.
http://www.agron.iastate.edu/~weeds/Ag317/ID/Lpig.html

Here is a pic of a smaller plant. I dug up the big one, was afraid to let it grow much bigger and impossible to kill.

Hope we BOTH solve this mystery.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2012 at 7:15PM
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aztreelvr

This weed is commonly called Red Spiderling (Boerhaavia coccinea), a perennial that can be found across the southern US from California to Florida. It's a sprawling plant that can reach 6 feet across and produces slender threadlike stems with tiny red flowers. Seeds are about 1/8 inch and sticky so they can hitch a ride on animals or shoes.

A similar plant is Coulter spiderling which is smaller.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   July 24, 2012 at 11:56AM
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DWA in AZ Sunset zone 12(9a Tucson AZ)

Could you possibly have two different plants? The first photo does show red stems--can't tell about the hairs.

A candidate for the larger plant: Fendler ground cherry?

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/2135/physalis-hederifolia-ivyleaf-groundcherry/

    Bookmark   July 24, 2012 at 12:09PM
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loganlady

This weed has small yellow flowers...also has a 1" seed pod. I have been looking it up and I "think" it is a common lambsquarters weed. Check it out and you guys tell me what you think?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2012 at 1:55PM
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loganlady

OMG!!!!! You found it out lakedweller_7nva!!! I was wrong...I checked the link you typed and there it was!!! Finally...you have no idea how long I've been trying to figure out what it was. And the best part is it is not a weed but a wildflower!! Thanks so much :)

beca~

    Bookmark   July 24, 2012 at 2:08PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Thanks, Lakedweller! I think this is it. The big plant got to be about 4 ft across but still no flowers or anything. Those "lanterns" are so pretty! Now I will let another one get real big and make sure it's this groundcherry.

When the plant is small the stems are red, when it gets bigger it's red and green. Thats what it shows at Fireflyforest website. That website is great, I use it all the time, but had no flower color to look for so couldn't use her website. BTW, she now lives in Hawaii. She told me that when she replied to a question by email.

Thanks, Aztreelvr, but that Spiderling has furry stems and leaves, so can't be my mystery weed, mine has smooth leaves and stems.

My plant did have a taproot, but not very long when I pulled it out at 4 feet wide, so I was relieved it wasn't hard to pull out.

Thanks everyone that posted!

    Bookmark   July 24, 2012 at 2:38PM
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DWA in AZ Sunset zone 12(9a Tucson AZ)

I was using Frank Rose's Mountain Wildflowers of Southern Arizona, just published this year. It's really helpful because it does show leaves and form.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 12:03PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Lakedweller,

Maybe I should buy my own copy of that book. Right now I'm inundated with weeds due to the recent rains. Some are more prolific than others. I just posted another thread because I can't find the plant.

I did see a very pretty wildflower with yellow flowers growing all along the sides of a road and found it at Firefly because I knew the flower color. It was Senna Covesii. When they don't have flowers it's very hard to find online.

Thanks again, perhaps you can tell me the name of the other weed I am posting in a different thread.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 2:24PM
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piranhafem

That weed at the top is definitely a spiderling, also called trailing 4-o'clock. They get tiny red flowers. The ground cherry has similarly shaped leaves but is much more upright.

It's definitely weed season in Tucson!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 3:14PM
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azbolt

All of the pictures in this thread are of Boerhavia coccinea, aztreelvr had it right. Do not allow this weed to stay in your yard, no matter how pretty you think it might be. It's VERY intrusive and hard to get rid of once it makes your yard its home. The sticky seeds will get all over your shoes, socks, pants, pets and then get stuck on your furniture and carpet. They do cause some staining as well. They have taken over my yard/lawn and I'm about tempted to try a herbicide to get rid of them, which is sad as I try to stay oraganic.

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 9:59AM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Kevin,

when I search Boerhavia coccinea the pics show hairy/furry leaves with red/purple flowers. My weed has thin, smooth, soft leaves and no hint of flowers or seeds. The stems are red or mixed red and green. I am going to let one grow and see what happens and pull all the others (it has a small taproot but it's easy to pull). I want to know once and for all what kind of weed or wildflower it is. It IS very invasive, it's all over my yard, so that's not good. Here is a closeup of it.

In the next post I have pics of another smaller plant that looks just like it and has tendrils and seeds. I have no idea what that is, either.

I don't know how to post more than one photo, can't find instructions if anyone can point me there.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 5:22PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Here's the other weed, it looks something like the first weed but is smaller and more delicate and has tendrils with seeds at the end. No flowers.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 5:30PM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

Here's a closer look at the other weed, it's leaves and seeds.

Below is the Dirty Dozen of Southwest weeds if anyone is interested. Mine are not in there, though.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dirty Dozen invaders of the Southwest

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 5:39PM
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azbolt

It's the same plant. In the last picture you can see the buds forming, these will be a redish/purlply small flower and then the sticky (as in gooey) seeds come after that.

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 12:23PM
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ReaderC

I've been wondering this same thing. My yard receives this 'guest' too every rain. It is pretty but can be agressive. I followed some links and looked at various pictures and believe it is giant Pigweed. Almost exactly as your pictures.

Here is a link that might be useful: James Cook University, Australia

    Bookmark   September 26, 2012 at 10:45AM
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naturelover42(AZ9b Tucson)

My mystery weed last week finally had small red/purplish flower and I found it on a Desert Tortoise website listed as a Spiderling. So, AZtreelvr was right, it's definitely a Spiderling. If you have a tortoise it's good to keep a couple of them around. They're nice looking plants, too bad they're so invasive.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2012 at 3:27PM
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