Nuttall's Rayless Goldenrod, Bigelowia nuttallii

Submitted by Leonard Lehman on Sat, 02/15/2014 - 12:36

Our ALLEGHANY CHAPTER is in the process of aiding our local Western PA Botanic Garden and Arboretum in developing shale barrens exhibit! We are germinating and raising several species of plants that are typical of this unique environment! One of the species we obtained seed of is Nuttall's Rayless Goldenrod, Bigelonia nuttalli! The Mt Cuba Center for Piedmont plants lists it as a choice native alpine but I can find little information on it other than the brief comments from Mt Cuba! Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Len Lehman

Alleghany Chapter

ps seed from Toadshade Nursery had almost 100% germination


(Moderator note:  Edited thread name to correct species name typo.   Lori)


Submitted by Lori S. on Sat, 02/15/2014 - 14:11

Hi, Len,

Is it Bigelowia nuttallii (note spelling) that you are interested in?  If you google this name, you'll find various entries on it.

Sounds like an interesting project!


Submitted by Mark McD on Sat, 02/15/2014 - 15:57

In reply to by Lori S.

What a totally cool looking plant, never heard of this genus before.  I went looking for more links, here are a few good ones.



By the way, I discovered that if links have the "at symbol" in it, such as in the flickr link above, it gets misinterpreted on this forum, to get around that, I used the "Link" button in the tools available while in edit mode.


Okay, your e-mail clarifies the question!  At a high level, trying to provide the sorts of conditions it's adapted to is usually a good start. Growing in shale barrens, I'd guess it likes good drainage and lean conditions, and googling mid-Appalachian shale barrens, it sounds like it may be tolerant of very hot and dry conditions.  If you are recreating that environment (that is, the substrate, in full sun), I'd guess you're probably most of the way there.

Perhaps someone here who is familiar with it can comment more usefully.


Submitted by Hoy on Sun, 02/16/2014 - 09:51

In reply to by Lori S.

Sorry, can't say anything about it! Never heard of it but it looks interesting.