Field madder habit

Field madder

Scientific Name

Richardia stellaris


Richardsonia stellaris

Common Names

field madder


South America




Distinguishing Characteristics

This is a prostrate, perennial herb with hairless to hairy stems.

Leaves are narrow or broad pear-shaped, pointed, sessile (without a stalk) and hairless above. The leaves form a 4-pointed star around the inflorescence (group of flowers) at the end of each branch.

Flowers are white and in a tight cluster. 

Fruit is a mericarp (breaks at maturity into units) which is hairless or sparsely scabrous (rough surface with short rigid hairs).

This plant is easily removed by holding it firmly near the central root and pulling.

Other plants easily confused with this plant

This plant may be confused with other Richardia species, also from South America. Richardia brasiliensis (white eye) can be distinguished from R. stellaris (field madder) by its hairy upper leaves and larger leaves which are on short petioles (leaf stems).

Sources & References

"Weeds - an illustrated botanical guide to weeds of Australia" by B. A. Auld and R. W. Medd

"Plantnet FloraOnline"  (2005)

Prepared by IEWF, June 2007