Virginia Tech Weed Identification Guide

Mouseear Chickweed: Cerastium vulgatum

Weed Description:  A spreading, mat-forming perennial with prominently hairy prostrate stems and leaves, resembling common chickweed.  Found throughout the United States except extreme portions from Texas to California.
Seedling:  Cotyledons rounded to ovate, green, 2-7 mm long, 0.5-2 mm wide, bearing a few hairs at base of stalk.

Leaves:  Opposite, dull-green, 1-2 cm long, 3-12 mm wide, oval to elliptic, lacking a petiole (sessile), with prominent hairs on upper surface and the veins beneath.

Roots:  Fibrous and shallow.

mouseear4-18.jpg (49104 bytes) Stems:  Slender, 1.5 to 5 cm long, with 2 rows of dense hairs, and root at the nodes when in contact with the soil.

Flowers:  Usually in clusters of three at the end of stems.   Flowers consist of 5 white petals that are deeply lobed, giving the appearance of 10 petals. Flowers are produced from May through October.

Fruit:  Capsule that is cylindrical to slightly curved, membranous, 7-11 mm long, 2-3 mm wide, producing many seeds.

Identifying Characteristics: Perennial growth habit with curved seed capsule.  Very similar to Common Chickweed (Stellaria media), however, mouseear chickweed is densely pubescent and roots at the stem nodes.

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