sericea lespedeza
Lespedeza cuneata (Dum.-Cours.) G. Don


Lespedeza cuneata is an upright semi-woody forb reaching 3-6 ft. (0.9-1.8 m) in height with one to many slender stems. Stems are often gray green with lines of hairs along the stem.
Leaves are thin, alternate, abundant and three-parted. Leaflets have wedge-shaped bases and are 0.5-1 in. (1.3-2.5 cm) long and hairy.
Flowering occurs from July to September, when small, creamy-white flowers with purple throats develop in clusters of two to four.
Fruit is a flat ovate to round single-seeded pod 0.12-0.15 in. (3-4 mm) wide. Pods are clustered in terminal axils, scattered along the stem, and clasped by persistent sepals.
Ecological Threat
Lespedeza cuneata is an extremely aggressive invader of open areas and out competes native vegetation. Once established, Lespedeza cuneata is very difficult to remove due to the seed bank which may remain viable for decades. Native to Asia and introduced into the United States in the late 1800s, it has been widely planted for erosion control, mine reclamation and wildlife habitat.


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EDDMapS Distribution

EDDMapS Distribution - This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts, herbaria, and literature. For more information, visit

State Regulated List

State Regulated List - This map identifies those states that list this species on their regulated list. For more information, visit

State Regulated List
   No Data for this state
   Troublesome or Common weed in one or more crops

Most Troublesome / Most Common Agricultural Weed List
This map identifies those states that consider this species either most troublesome or most common in at least one commodity. For more information, visit the MTMC project page.

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Rosidae
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)
Genus: Lespedeza
Subject: Lespedeza cuneata (Dum.-Cours.) G. Don

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
Chinese lespedeza, sericea lespedeza

Related Scientific Names:
Lespedeza sericea (Dum.-Cours.) G. Don (Synonym)


Plants - Shrub or Subshrub