General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Shrub
Sun Requirements: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
Dry
Plant Height: 3 feet
Plant Spread: 1 - 3 feet
Leaves: Evergreen
Other: velvety texture
Fruit: Edible to birds
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Yellow
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Summer
Underground structures: Taproot
Uses: Will Naturalize
Edible Parts: Fruit
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Butterflies
Hummingbirds
Propagation: Seeds: Other info: prolific self seeder; seed may be viable in soil for 20 years
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Containers: Suitable in 3 gallon or larger

Image
Common names
  • Velvetleaf
  • Indianmallow
  • Butter Print
  • Pie Marker
  • China Jute
  • Chinese Lantern

Photo Gallery
Location: My yard
Date: 2016-08-27
Location: Clinton, Michigan 49236
Date: 2017-10-27
"Abutilon theophrasti, 2015, Velvetleaf, a-BEW-tih-lon thee-oh-FR
Location: Brownstown Pennsylvania
Date: 2017-08-25
Tiny native bee enjoying the pollen
Location: Prague
Date: 2017-08-22
Location: my garden
Date: 2016-04-23
Uploaded by wildflowers
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017
Location: My Yard
Date: 2016-08-27
Plant is now almost 8 ft. tall; blooming profusely.
Location: My Garden
Date: 2016-06-24

Photo by AnRo0002

Photo by Amada44
Location: Brownstown Pennsylvania
Date: 2017-08-25
Location: Northeastern, Texas
Date: 2015-07-22
Ripe seed head
Location: Elberfeld, Indiana
Date: 2017-07-27
Location: North Carolina, USA. USDA zone 7b.
Date: July 31, 2006
Foliage, flower and seedpod.
Location: Maine
Date: 2016-08-28
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2017-08-06
leaf of a small velvetleaf
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017
Location: Clinton, Michigan 49236
Date: 2017-10-27
"Abutilon theophrasti, 2015, Velvetleaf, a-BEW-tih-lon thee-oh-FR
Location: Clinton, Michigan 49236
Date: 2017-10-27
"Abutilon theophrasti, 2015, Velvetleaf, a-BEW-tih-lon thee-oh-FR
Location: Clinton, Michigan 49236
Date: 2017-10-27
"Abutilon theophrasti, 2015, Velvetleaf, a-BEW-tih-lon thee-oh-FR

Photo by Vibraison
Location: Hollabrunn district, Lower Austria
Photo by Stefan.lefnaer
Location: Botanical Gardens of Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
Photo by Karelj

Photo by Roger Culos
Location: Korneuburg District, Lower Austria
Photo by Stefan.lefnaer
Location: Brownstown Pennsylvania
Date: 2017-08-25
Location: Korneuburg District, Lower Austria
Photo by Stefan.lefnaer
Location: Northeastern, Texas
Date: 2015-07-22
Location: Fort Custer Recreation Area in Augusta, Michigan.
Date: 2014-12-30
Photo courtesy of: Cody Hough
Location: Hockenheimer Rheinbogen
Date: 2013-09-21
Photo courtesy of: AnRo0002
Location: Indiana zone 5
Date: 2015-05-27
Location: Indiana zone 5
Date: 2015-05-27
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2016-09-13
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2016-09-14
Uploaded by keithp2012
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2016-09-18
Uploaded by keithp2012
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2016-09-18
Uploaded by keithp2012
Location: Maine
Date: 2016-08-28
Location: Maine
Date: 2016-08-28
Location: Maine
Date: 2016-08-28

Date: August
credit: John Cameron
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2017-08-06
roots of a small velvetleaf

Date: October
credit: Michael Becker
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017
Location: My property in Idaho
Date: 8-2-2017

Date: 2011-08-07
Photo courtesy of: Anne The Librarian
Location: Rübenacker bei Neuss
Photo courtesy of: Michael Becker
Location: Brno Komín.CZ
Photo courtesy of: I.Sacek, senior
Location: Hockenheimer Rheinbogen
Date: 2013-09-21
Photo courtesy of: AnRo0002
Uploaded by SongofJoy
Location: North Carolina, USA. USDA zone 7b.
Date: July 11, 2006
With zinnias (L) and Musella lasiocarpa (R)
Location: North Carolina, USA. USDA zone 7b.
Date: July 31, 2006
It is said that the pod was used to imprint butter.

USDA photo
This plant is tagged in:
Image

Comments:
  • Posted by jmorth (central Illinois) on Jul 29, 2012 12:08 AM concerning plant:
    Plant has ability to attain very large proportions. Size is related to amount of nitrogen in the soil. Self seeds prolifically.. Considered a troublesome weed by farmers in the Midwest. Often found growing in and along soybean and corn fields. Texture of leaf is basis for common name; Velvet leaf; they definitely feel soft and velvet. Seed capsule shape forms basis for some other common names.
    Seed can remain viable in the soil for 20 years plus; seeds are reportedly edible.
    Other habitats include abandoned fields, construction sites, waste areas, and where the soil has recently been disturbed.
    Originally introduced from India as a possible source of bast.
    In an outdoor emergency, the soft leaves can be used as a substitute for toilet paper.
  • Posted by Gardener2493 on Jul 20, 2021 1:29 PM concerning plant:
    This species (Abutilon Theophrasti) is from the genus of the popular flowering maples (Abutilon) but it is NOT something you want in your garden. Although edible, it is highly invasive in the United States, and can outcompete other plants. Its huge leaves and allelopathic properties make it easy for it to outcompete other plants. In crops, it is a curse. Velvetleaf grows up to 8 feet tall with huge, velvety, foul-smelling leaves and small, bright yellow flowers. The seedpods look like black crowns and contain many seeds that can remain viable for up to half a century. Velvetleaf is similar in appearance to Paulownia seedlings, but Paulownia does not have an odor when crushed, and its leaves are oppositely arranged along the stem. What's interesting is that Paulownia and velvetleaf both come from China, but velvetleaf was imported here as a fiber crop, but Paulownia was introduced as a lumber and ornamental tree. Velvetleaf is also mistaken for its close cousin, Abutilon Indicum, but Abutilon Indicum is a perennial, tropical shrub, while velvetleaf is a huge, lanky annual plant present across the United States. Abutilon Indicum also has rounder seedpods and is not very common within the U.S.
  • Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Jul 28, 2019 3:53 PM concerning plant:
    This is a common annual weed in and near farm fields, especially of corn or soybeans, plus gardens and waste places in the country or in urban habitats, plus occasionally in landscape planting beds the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic US, growing as far north as central Minnesota. Even though it has a big taproot, it is not hard to pull up, unless it is a big one. It is usually about 2 to 4 feet high, but can get 6 to 8 feet high. The small yellow flowers are about 3/4 inch in diameter with 5 petals. The cup-shaped seed pods about 1 inch in diameter hold about 5 to 15 grayish-brown seeds that are rounded, but flattened and notched.

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