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Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Ambrosia trifida - great ragweed

Other Common Names: buffaloweed, giant ragweed
Plant Form: Forb or Subshrub

Family: Asteraceae

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Max Licher @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Max Licher @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Forb Plant Description

Origin: Native   Life Cycle: Annual
General Desc: A tall, sturdy, rough-hairy plant with elongated terminal clusters of nodding male flower heads.
Identification notes: Leaves are mostly opposite. Usually some blades are palmately shaped with 3 to 5 lobes.
Height: 6 to 12 feet


Habitat Description: Fertile moist soils, waste places, and thickets. A serious pest in cultivated crops.
Plant Communities: Riparian, Disturbed Areas
Elevation: Below 5200 feet

Flower Characteristics

Color: Green     Shape: Daisy or dandelion-like in elongated clusters     Tubular: N     Flowering Period: May - Sep
Description: Male flowers are abundant in spike-like clusters on the tips of branches and stems. Female flowers are few, have no petals, and are located in the axils of the upper leaves.

Leaf and Stem Characteristics

Leaf Color: Green     Leaf Type: Simple     Leaf Shape: Palmate     Leaf Margin: Lobed     Leaf Attachment: Opposite     Leaves Clasp: N
Hairs: Leaves and stems     Spines: N
Leaf Description: Stem is thick, fleshy and black-lined. Leaves vary in shape, some are ovate and some are palmate with 3 to 5 lobes.

Fruit and Seed Characteristics

Fruit Type: Achene
Fruit Notes: Burs are conical with a woody hull and a beak.

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
(928) 445-6590
Version 8.0  
Last Updated: Dec 13, 2022
Content Questions/Comments: Email Matt Halldorson  
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