Tread-Softly – Wild Weeds

Wild Weeds – Weed of the Month


Cnidoscolus stimulosus
Green plant (tread-softly) with white flowers among fallen leaves.
By © Hans Hillewaert, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Cnidoscolus stimulosus has many common names, including finger rot, and is often compared to Texas bull-nettle which also is commonly called tread-softly. This plants name is a warning for passers-by to tread softly because it’s stinging hairs can be quite painful. However, this perennial herb is native to the southeast US and can be found in sandhill forests, dunes, pastures, fields, and roadside.

Tread-Softly has alternate leaves consisting of three to five untoothed lobes. The large white flowers have five petals and appear throughout the spring and summer months (March-August). Beautiful, but beware! Appreciate this wild weed from afar and avoid touching the plant. Some people experience mild stings while others may develop more severe rashes or potentially dangerous allergic reactions.

Learn more about how to identify tread-softly here:

Check out other Wild Weeds Here:


Avatar photo
Posted: January 1, 2021

Category: Agriculture, Conservation, Natural Resources, Pests & Disease, UF/IFAS Extension
Tags: Natural Resources, NFLAG, Wild Weeds

Subscribe For More Great Content

IFAS Blogs Categories