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Invasive - Central, North, South

Sphagneticola trilobata Wedelia

Edward F. Gilman, Ryan W. Klein, and Gail Hansen

Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia is a FISC Category 2 Invasive plant in Florida. Information on this plant is being provided for identification in the landscape to encourage removal and identification at nurseries to discourage purchase.


It would be hard to find another groundcover better suited to hot, dry conditions than wedelia. Attractive, glossy, dark green, lobed leaves, rapidly spreading growth habit, and a continuous display of small, bright yellow, daisy-like blooms create a much-favored landscape plant.

Full Form - Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia.
Figure 1. Full Form - Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia.
Credit: Edward F. Gilman, UF/IFAS


Full Form - Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia.
Figure 2. Leaf - Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia.
Credit: Edward F. Gilman, UF/IFAS


Full Form - Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia.
Figure 3. Flower - Sphagneticola trilobata: Wedelia.
Credit: Edward F. Gilman, UF/IFAS

General Information

Scientific name: Sphagneticola trilobata

Pronunciation: sfeg-net-ee-COLE-ah try-loe-BAY-tuh

Common name(s): wedelia, creeping oxeye

Family: Asteraceae

Plant type: perennial; herbaceous

USDA hardiness zones: 8B through 11 (Figure 4)

Planting month for zone 8: year-round

Planting month for zone 9: year-round

Planting month for zone 10 and 11: year-round

Origin: native to Central America, North America, Mexico, South America

Invasive potential: invasive and not recommended by UF/IFAS faculty (reassess in 10 years)

Uses: mass planting; container or above-ground planter; naturalizing; hanging basket; cascading down a wall

Availability: generally available in many areas within its hardiness range

Shaded area represents potential planting range.
Figure 4. Shaded area represents potential planting range.


Height: 0.5 to 1 feet

Spread: depends upon supporting structure

Plant habit: upright

Plant density: dense

Growth rate: fast

Texture: medium


Leaf arrangement: opposite/subopposite

Leaf type: simple

Leaf margin: serrate; lobed

Leaf shape: obovate

Leaf venation: bowed; brachidodrome

Leaf type and persistence: evergreen

Leaf blade length: 2 to 4 inches

Leaf color: green

Fall color: no fall color change

Fall characteristic: not showy


Flower color: yellow

Flower characteristic: year-round flowering


Fruit shape: elongated

Fruit length: less than 0.5 inch

Fruit cover: dry or hard

Fruit color: brown

Fruit characteristic: inconspicuous and not showy

Trunk and Branches

Trunk/bark/branches: not applicable

Current year stem/twig color: green

Current year stem/twig thickness: medium


Light requirement: plant grows in part shade/part sun

Soil tolerances: extended flooding; alkaline; clay; sand; acidic; loam

Drought tolerance: moderate

Soil salt tolerances: good

Plant spacing: 18 to 24 inches


Roots: not applicable

Winter interest: no special winter interest

Outstanding plant: not particularly outstanding

Pest resistance: long-term health usually not affected by pests

Use and Management

Suited to a wide variety of conditions, wedelia will cover rough, rocky ground or wet drainage ditches, and even tolerates some degree of foot traffic. Producing the most bloom in full sun, frost-free locations, wedelia will grow in shade and still bloom, although only sparsely. Though killed to the ground by frost, wedelia's rapid growth quickly returns with warm weather (in the northern part of USDA hardiness zone 9), the long, creeping stems rooting wherever they touch moist soil. Set the plants on 18 inch centers. Creating a dense mat of foliage, wedelia rarely needs pruning to control its height but can tolerate severe trimming, even occasional mowing on a high setting, if plants need to be rejuvenated.

Wedelia has a vine-like habit and will grow up into shrubs and trees planted in the bed. When used as a groundcover in and among shrubs, it is a high maintenance plant. It looks best planted in a mass over large areas. Like ivy and other creepers, it will require regular trimming along the edge of the groundcover bed to control its spread. It may be best used as a container plant where it will cascade over the side forming a weeping mound of yellow flowers. It has escaped cultivation in certain regions of south Florida where it proliferates, especially in wet areas.

Propagation is easily accomplished by setting unrooted tip cuttings in the landscape soil where new plants are wanted, or by layering, the stems rooting quickly.

Pests and Diseases

Though relatively sturdy, wedelia can occasionally be infected with chewing insects and mites.

No diseases are of major concern.

IFAS Assessment

Central, North, South


Invasive and not recommended by IFAS. Will be reassessed every 10 years. Specified and limited uses may be considered by the IFAS Invasive Plants Working Group

view assessment

Publication #FPS-612

Release Date:February 6, 2024

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About this Publication

This document is FPS-612, one of a series of the Department of Environmental Horticulture, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date October 1999. Revised October 2023. Visit the EDIS website at for the currently supported version of this publication.

About the Authors

Edward F. Gilman, professor emeritus; Ryan W. Klein, assistant professor, arboriculture; and Gail Hansen, professor, sustainable landscape design; Department of Environmental Horticulture, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.


  • Gail Hansen de Chapman
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