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Red spiderling

Q:  Can you identify this weed for me?

A:  I am glad you brought in a sample which made it much easier for me to identify.  This is one of those plants which some people consider a weed while others consider it a wildflower.  It is actually sold in some markets as an excellent choice for drought tolerant areas where there will be little water applied except rain. The plant is called Red spiderling, Boerhaavia coccinea.  It would make an excellent ground cover of those hot, dry parking lot medians.  It has a tiny reddish-burgundy flower which blooms in the late spring through the late summer.  I have a patch of it growing in the parking lot along the sidewalk at the Yulee satellite office.  I assumed the seed was propagated by a bird or wind.  You can imagine how harsh an environment the parking lot is – so this is indeed a tough plant.  Red spiderling can grow in full sun (like my parking lot) or partial shade.  Since it is a perennial, it can be propagated by seeds or rhizomes.