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Pineapple weed grows in almost all waste areas and sometimes in between sidewalk cracks. Pineapple weed is an amazing plant which seems to thrive in abused soil such as dirt roads, driveways, and other dry or sandy soil locations.
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Often mistaken for chamomile, pineapple weed is a close sister and is an annual plant. It grows from May to September. Pineapple weed may be confused with young mayweed chamomile; however the mayweed does not emit a pineapple-like odour when crushed. Additionally, mayweed chamomile grows much taller than pineapple weed. This wild edible weed grows in many countries in the northern and southern hemisphere and in some places is nicknamed the “street weed”.
Pineapple weed has a cone-shaped or rounded non-rayed, composite flower head that is yellow-greenish in colour. (It resembles chamomile only without the white rays.)
Pineappleweed flowers from June to September, sometimes into November. Insects seldom visit the flowers. Seed is set from July onwards within 40-50 days of flowering. The average seed number per plant ranges from 850 to 7,000. The 1,000 seed weight is 0.13 g.
Seedlings and larger plants should be controlled by cultivation and hand weeding to prevent seeding. Pineappleweed seedlings are more numerous on tine-cultivated or no-till land than ploughed land.
Pineappleweed occurs in cereals and broad-leaved arable crops and has become a frequent weed of intensive vegetable crops. It is also a common garden weed.
An introduced annual weed of wasteland and bare places by paths. Pineappleweed was introduced into the UK just prior to 1900 and within 25 years it had spread along roadsides throughout most of England. Pineappleweed is now common throughout the UK, and is still increasing, especially on tracks and paths and on cultivated land. It prefers an open loamy or sandy loam soil.
Plants emerging from January to April remain vegetative for longer before flowering than plants emerging from mid-May to mid-July that take just 40-50 days to flower. All set seed and die before winter. Plants that emerge after August are likely to overwinter as vegetative rosettes that do not flower until the following spring. Daylength is the controlling factor and flowering is delayed at a shorter daylength.