113 Wedelia trilobataCommon Names: wedelia, Z Herbe a Femme Family: Asteraceae (aster/daisy Family)
Wedelia forms a low-growing mat mat of foliage with deeply lobed leaves that grows to a height of about 10in( cm). Blooms profusely with 1" yellow-orange flowers resembling marigolds or zinnias, which are borne singly on the end of each stem. Plant creeps and roots at nodes, making a dense ground cover.
Wedelia trilobata is found in the West Indies, Hawaii, south Florida, Central America, West Africa, especially at low elevations.
CultureGrows best in moist, well-drained, fertile soil, but does fine in poor soil as well. Quite adaptable in tropical climates. Light: Sun to part shade. Moisture: Moist to average. Hardiness: USDA Zones 9 - 11. Propagation: Division.
Excellent ground cover in warm climates in its native range. Wedelia is especially good for soil retention and erosion control. Plantings are very attractive with nearly constant and prolific blooming. Wedelia may be mowed to keep low and manicured. The plant is no longer considered appropriate for any of these usages in Florida (and similar frostfree climates) where it has proven to be an invasive nuisance.
The plant has use in traditional medicine: crushed leaves are used as a poultice; tea is given to alleviate symptoms of colds and flu; and it is used in combination with other herbs to clear the placenta after birth.
Farm animals have aborted fetuses after grazing on Wedelia. It is now listed by the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council (FLEPPC) as a Category Two Invasive for central and southern Florida and should not be planted.
Steve Christman 1/10/98