In BC, we presently recognize the varieties of this species, although Flora North America does not. Var. atkinsoniana is a rare native in BC and ranges south to the northwestern states, while var. tinctoria is native to eastern North America and is often grown in gardens and occasionally escapes, but it does not persist in BC.
Note Author: Frank Lomer, Honourary Research Associate, University of British Columbia Herbarium.
Annual or biennial herb from a fibrous root; stems erect, glabrous, branched, 0.3-1.2 m tall.
Lower stem leaves opposite, pinnately cut or bipinnately cut, the ultimate segments linear or linear-elliptic, 5-16 cm long, including the stalk; the upper leaves pinnately divided into 3-5 linear segments or entire.
Heads with ray and disk flowers, several to numerous on long, slender stalks at the end of the branches; involucres 6-10 mm tall; involucral bracts markedly different, the inner 6-8 mm long, egg-shaped, brown with yellow margins, the outer reduced, 7-8, narrowly triangular, obtuse, 2-3 mm long; ray flowers orange-yellow, often with a purplish-brown basal spot, about 8, 1-2 cm long; disk flowers purplish-brown; receptacular bracts linear-oblong, orange-red.
Achenes black, 2-3 mm long, margins narrowly-winged; pappus lacking or of 2 small teeth.
Present over the Summer
Source: The USDA