Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie
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  • Round-headed Bushclover

    SCIENTIFIC NAME: Lespedeza capitata

    COMMON NAMES: Round-headed Bushclover, Bushclover, Roundhead Lespedeza

    BLOOM TIME: Aug, Sept


    • Slender, unbranched plant grows 2-5 ft. tall.
    • Leaves divide into 3 narrow leaflets, leaves 3 in. long with fine silver hairs.
    • Short stems bear 1 ½ in. creamy white flowers on upper half.
    • Flowers have a small purple patch near stem.
    • Habitat: savannahs, prairies & woodlands.
    • Comanche used leaves for tea.
    • Omaha & Poncas Nations would moisten stem to stick to skin, then lit other end to burn down to skin to treat nerve pain & rheumatism.


    • The caterpillars of several species of skippers feed on the foliage.
    • Many mammalian herbivores eat this protein rich & palatable plant.
    • Seeds are eaten by the Mourning Dove, Bobwhite, and Wild Turkey.
    • During winter, seeds are eaten by the Slate-Colored Junco.