CATCHWEED BEDSTRAW, Galium
aparine L. 1, lower section of plant; 2, upper portion
of stems; 3, flower; 4, seed pod; 5, seed. Annual.
Roots branching, short, shallow. Stems 1 to 3 feet (0.3 to
0.9 m) long, weak, sprawling, 4-sided with each edge bearing a row of downward-pointing
stiff bristles. Leaves narrow, rough, bristle-pointed, 6 to 8 borne
in a circle at each joint of stem. Flowers very small, white, with
4 petals, borne on slender branches attached at the joints of the stems.
Seed pod in 2 nearly spherical halves, covered with stiff
bristles. Seed ball-shaped with deep pit in one side and short,
sharp spines, 1/8 inch (3 mm) long, on outer surface. Found on moist
land in meadows, pastures, woodlands, and fence rows.