You are here

Illinois Bundleflower

Illinois Bundleflower
Desmanthus illinoensis
(Order Fabales; Family Mimosaceae)

Illinois Bundleflower showing seeds. Photo by Amy Coffman, July 2011.

Diagnosis:  Illinois bundleflower is a perennial plant usually 0.3 - 1.0 meters tall.  Stems can be smooth or slightly hairy.  The leaves occur in an alternate, twice-pinnately compound pattern.  Pinnae are 2-4 cm long with 6-15 pairs.  Leaflets are 3-5 mm long with 20-30 pairs.  The leaflets are also touch-sensitive and will fold together when handled. Inflorescences on the bundleflower are 2-8 cm long and appear as a dense, globular head originating from the axils of the upper leaves.  Small, whitish flowers are produced July through August.  Fruit is developed as a curved pod occurring in dense clusters.  The pods are 1-2.5 cm long and contain 2-6 seeds per pod.

Illinois bundleflower flower (left;  Characteristic Bundleflower seeds (right;,r:10,s:17)

Flowering period: May through July.

Distribution: Illinois bundleflower is distributed from North Dakota and Minnesota, to New Mexico and Colorado, and from Texas to Florida. It is distributed broadly in Kansas. 

Distribution map.

Habitat:  Occurs in prairies and open sandy sites, often near bodies of water.

Native status: Native to U.S.

Conservation status: Not endangered.

Barkley, T.M. 1983. Field Guide to the Common Weeds of Kansas. University Press of Kansas, Lawrence, KS.
Haddock, M.J. 2005. Wildflowers and Grasses of Kansas. University Press of Kansas, Lawrence, KS.

Image credits:
Illinois bundleflower. Photo by Amy Coffman, July 2011.
Bundleflower seeds:,r:10,s:17
Distribution map:
Illinois bundleflower flower:

Submitted by: Amy Coffman, July 2011.

Wichita State University
Generated on 2011. This website is continuously updated.
Comments can be sent to Mary Liz Jameson.
Designed by Bioadventures.