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Perennials.  Rhizomatous.  Stems are glabrous below, becoming pubescent above.  Typical height is (4-)5 to 6+ feet.

Flower heads are radiateRay florets are 10-20, yellow, neuterDisc florets are bisexual and fertile, the corollas yellow.  Involucral bracts are spreading, lance-shaped, often extending beyond the circumference of the disc.

Basal leaves are absent at flowering.  Lower- to mid-stem leaves tend to be opposite; the uppermost often alternate.  Generally, leaves are lanceolate to lance-ovate, borne on petioles, with margins that are either toothed or untoothed*.  At least the larger leaves have 3 prominent veins.

Plants of damp prairies, roadsides or thickets.  Flowers in September.  Native in the Midwest, but uncommon and introduced in the northeastern states.

* Leaf margins tend to be variable, some forms with coarsely toothed margins, but others have entire or nearly entire leaf margins.  This seems to be so throughout the range of the species.

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