Family:     Asteraceae (Sunflower family)

Duration:  Perennial

Height:     40-200 cm (1.5-6.5 ft)

Blooming: July-Sept.



Silphium integrifolium  Michx.

Stem: slightly squared sometimes covered with shore hairs.

Flowers: large yellow flower-heads up to 5-8 cm (2-3 in) in diameter.

Leaves: The leaves are opposite and sessile (attached directly to stem) with blades up to 23 cm (9 in) long. The leaves are covered in small, stiff hairs.

Sun:  Full to part sun

INPAWS Native Communities:  Prairie grassland (sun)

Comments:  Rosinweed contains a resin that Native Americans used for chewing gum.  This is where the common name has come from.  Unlike compass plant (S. laciniatum)  and prairie dock (S. terebinthinaceum), the leaves of rosinweed are oppositely arranged.  It differs from rosinweed (S. perfoliatum) with the former fully clasping around definite four sided stems whereas rosinweed slightly holds on to a round stem.


Etymology: The genus, Silphium, comes from the Greek name for a mythic resinous plant called Silphion.  The specific epithet, integrifolium, comes from two Latin words, integer meaning "entire", and -folium meaning "foliage or leaves". 

Butterfly/moth host plant: Silphium borer moth (Tebenna silphiella)

all photos by Nathanael Pilla

Landscape: A smaller option if you wanted a silphium.  It tolerates dry soil and a little shade, but prefers and will grow great in full sun.

Species Present and Native
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Michigan City, IN., 46360 

The mission of Save the Dunes is to preserve, protect and restore the Indiana dunes and all natural resources in Northwest Indiana’s Lake Michigan Watershed for an enhanced quality of life.

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