Velvetleaf (Abutilon theophrasti) in the Abutilons Database

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Velvetleaf
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General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Sun Requirements: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
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
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


Posted by jmorth (central Illinois) on Jul 29, 2012 12:08 AM

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.

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Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Jul 28, 2019 3:53 PM

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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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Coronavirus Info Central (COVID19 Discussion) by EscondidoCal Jul 10, 2020 11:53 PM 5,313
Need help in identifying these plant. by Beanstalk Feb 21, 2020 7:45 AM 3
Plant identification by Samlav Aug 30, 2018 6:50 AM 3
Mystery plant by GunP Aug 23, 2018 9:10 AM 2
Weed? by luvsgrtdanes Jul 31, 2018 5:40 PM 17
Can somebody tell me what this is? by m33jones2 Jun 9, 2018 7:37 PM 5
Need help identifying by seed pod by mzleslie Sep 23, 2017 4:36 PM 2
HELP! WHAT ARE THESE? These are popping up all over. What are they? by mmackranch Jul 30, 2017 4:37 PM 4
Volunteer plant needs ID by IJsbrandtGA Aug 14, 2017 6:32 AM 16
Mystery plant by Dove_ven Jun 22, 2017 12:19 PM 1

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