Zigzag Goldenrod, Solidago flexicaulis

Zigzag Goldenrod

Solidago flexicaulis

Benefits: Pollinator Benefit Graphic
Sun Shade: Plant Light Requirements Graphic
Bloom Time: Late Summer/Early Fall
Hardiness Zones: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Soil Conditions: Loam, Sand
Soil Moisture: Medium, Dry
Color: Yellow
Fragrance: No
Height: 2-4 feet
Spacing: 1 foot

Zigzag Goldenrod (Solidago flexicaulis) or Broadleaf Goldenrod is a rhizomatous perennial that is native to rich woods and thickets. It typically grows upright to 2-3 feet tall, but sometime to as much as 4 feet tall in the western parts of its range. This species is distinguished by its zigzag stems and its toothed, broad-ovate leaves. Leaves are sharply pointed at the tips. Stems are sometimes but not always in a zigzag shape. Flowers appear in small, axillary clusters on the upper parts of the stems and stem ends.

The blooming period occurs from late summer to early fall and lasts about 1 month. Both ray and disk florets are fertile. During the fall, the florets are replaced by achenes with small tufts of hair. They are distributed by the wind. The small achenes are bullet-shaped and pubescent. The root system is fibrous and rhizomatous. Vegetative colonies of plants are sometimes formed from the spreading rhizomes.

Habitats include rich deciduous woodlands, protected wooded slopes facing north or east, calcareous seeps in wooded areas, low areas along woodland streams, shaded limestone cliffs, and edges of limestone glades. This wildflower is usually found in higher quality natural areas.

Goldenrods in general have been wrongfully accused of causing hay fever which is actually an allergic reaction to wind-borne pollen from other plants such as ragweed.

Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. This is a woodland species that perhaps does best in sun-dappled part shade, but will also grow in full shade. Established plants tolerate some dry soils. Plants may be grown from seed and may self-seed in the garden.

 Plant Notes and Herbal Uses
  Interesting goldenrod for shady woodland areas.
  White-tailed Deer readily browse on the foliage.
  Flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies.
 Further Information

 Wisconsin Fruit Trees
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 Widsconsin Edible Plants-Eat On The Wild Side
 8 Dandelion Recipes
 Wisconsin Native Plant Nurseries

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