Encyclopedia Article

Carpetweed                 Mollugo verticillata L.

Family:   Molluginaceae (Carpetweed family)
Life cycle:   Annual         
Habitat:   Ornamental beds, gardens, waste areas
Native status: Native to North America

General description:   Prostrate stems up to 16 inches long, forming circular mat.  Whorled leaves, typically 5 to 6 per node, oblanceolate to spatulate, up to 1.5 in long, glabrous, and with one prominent vein.  Small, white flowers with five petals produced at nodes.

Key ID traits:  Glabrous stems and leaves; whorled leaves.

Similar species:   Catchweed bedstraw has a similar growth habit, but stems and leaves of bedstraw have bristly hairs.  Bedstraw flowers have four petals versus five for carpetweed, and bedstraw is a winter annual.

Weed ID Factsheet Index

carpetweed leaves and flower
Carpetweed has whorled leaves (more than three leaves per node) and smooth, round stems.

catchweed bedstraw leaves and flower
Catchweed bedstraw leaves and flower.  Stems of bedstraw are ridged and covered with stiff bristles.

prostrate growth habit of carpetweed
Prostrate growth habit of carpetweed