Galium species

The Bedstraws

Fragrant Bedstraw; Lower Pauness Lake, BWCAW, Photo © 1999 by Earl J.S. Rook
Fragrant Bedstraw
Lower Pauness Lake, BWCAW
Photo © 1999 by Earl J.S. Rook

Flora, fauna, earth, and sky...
The natural history of the northwoods


Name:

  • Galium, from the Greek, gala (gala), "milk," which is curdled by some of the bedstraws. 
  • Common name from the sweet-smelling straw of the various galiums formerly was used in mattresses
  • Other common names include Måror (Swe)

Taxonomy:

  • Kingdom Plantae, the Plants
    • Division Magnoliophyta, the Angiosperms (flowering plants)
      • Class Magnoliopsida, the Dicotyledons 
      • Subclass Asteridae
        • Order Rubiales
          • Family Rubiaceae, the Madders, including coffee, quinine, and dozens of ornamental plants
            • Genus Galium, the Bedstraws
  • Taxonomic Serial Number: 34796
  • North Country species
    • aparine, Stickywilly Bedstraw
    • asprellum, Rough Bedstraw
    • boreale, Northern Bedstraw
    • labradoricum, Northern Bog Bedstraw
    • obtusum, Bluntleaf Bedstraw
    • tinctorium, Stiff Marsh Bedstraw
    • trifidum, Threepetal Bedstraw
    • triflorum, Fragrant Bedstraw
    • verum, Yellow Spring Bedstraw

Description:

  • A ¼, ½, ¾, º, é
  • Leaves
  • Stem
  • Roots
  • Flowers
    • Sepals
    • Petals
    • Stamens
    • Pistils
    • Ovary superior (within blossom) inferior (below flower)
  • Fruit
  • Seed

Identification:

  • Identifiable as
  • Distinguished from
  • Field Marks

Distribution:

  • Alaska to Newfoundland,

Habitat:

Fire:

Associates:

  • Trees:
  • Shrubs:
  • Herbs:
  • Ground Covers:
  • Mammals:
  • Birds:

History:

Uses:

Reproduction:

  • Sexually by seed
  • Flowers
  • Assexually by

Propagation:

  • By rhizome division,

Cultivation:

  • Hardy to USDA Zone 3 (average minimum annual temperature -40ºF)
  • Cultivars and species available by mail order from specialty suppliers or at local nurseries

Links:

Comments:

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Last Updated on 21 October, 2002