Rubiaceae
Galium aparine

Cleavers

Climbing to erect or sprawling. Stems 4-angled when young, brittle. Leaves in whorls of 6–8, round to oval, 1/2–1 1/4 in. long, with tiny, long, sharp point at rounded tip. Leaves have hooked bristles pointing back toward the plant. Flowers white to greenish on spreading stalks clustered in most leaf axils. Seed 2 sessile nutlets covered with hooked bristles. Grows in dry to moist forests, partly shaded areas along beaches, in fields, as a weed in gardens. Most common of all Galium species in Pacific Northwest. The name cleavers means "to cling," in this case by hooked hairs on both leaves and seeds.

  • Rarity: Locally Common
  • Flowering Time: All Spring And Summer
  • Life Cycle: Annual
  • Height: 8--40 inches
  • Habitat: Meadow, West-Side Forest, East-Side Forest
  • Found In: Siskiyous, East Gorge, West Gorge, Steens, Wallowas, Crater Lake NP, N Cascades NP, Mt. Rainier NP, Olympic NP
  • Native: Yes