Scrophulariaceae (Figwort Family)
General - a slender annual; stems few-branched or simple, 10 - 40 cm tall, fine-hairy to hairless, glandular (especially above).
Leaves - opposite, short stalked, 2 - 6 cm long, linear or lance-shaped, mostly smooth-edged but sometimes with bristle-tipped teeth near base.
Flowers - single in upper leaf axils or in leafy spikes at stem tips, white or pinkish; petals tubular, 8 - 12 mm long, 2-lipped with yellow patch in throat, surrounded by green leafy bracts; appearing mid-summer.
Fruit - curved, asymmetrical, flattened capsules; 1 to 4 seeds 2 - 4 mm long, blackish with light coloured tips.; appearing in late-summer.
Dry, sandy sites, often in pine woodlands; widespread across boreal forest from Manitoba to B.C.
The genus name Melampyrum comes from the Greek melas, 'black', and pyros, 'wheat' because when cow-wheat seeds were mixed with grains of wheat and ground into flour, the resulting bread tended to be black.
Return to Top of Page
| Ontario's North (West) Forest | Boreal Forests of the World | North (West) Forest Industry |
| World Links and Resources | "Forest Finder" Search Engine | Educational Resources |
| What's Happening | Contacts | Site Map |