Friday, October 22, 2010
Pinebarren goldenrod - Solidago fistulosa
Another one of Florida's common and large goldenrods is pinebarren goldenrod (Solidago fistulosa). This species occurs throughout Florida and the Southeast in a wide variety of upland habitats, but is especially common to disturbed open fields and open pinelands.
This is a deciduous species that appears each spring and grows vigorously upward through the summer; eventually reaching a mature height of 6-8 feet. The leaves are oval and slightly pointed and remain about the same size all the way up the stem.
Flowering occurs in fall; October- November. The heads are open panicles and each flower is typical of the genus; small and bright yellow.
Pinebarren goldenrod is a robust species that spreads rapidly in the landscape by suckering. Eventually, it forms dense thickets that essentially exclude most other species unless planted with equally dominant wildflowers, grasses, or woody plants. As such, it is a poor choice for small landscapes or planting areas where a large diversity of species are destired. Use it as a screen in larger settings or as an accent planting where its spread can be easily confined. In the latter settings, its robust growth and profuse flowering can be quite effective.
Pinebarren goldenrod is extremely adaptable, but only rarely offered commercially.