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BEDSTRAW, SMOOTH
Galium mollugo

Smooth bedstraw stem showing square edges and whorled leaves.

Smooth bedstraw infestation in corn.

Smooth bedstraw fruits.



  • The genus name, 'Galium' is from the Greek word for milk and refers to an old use for the plant to curdle milk in making cheese.

  • The common name 'bedstraw' has two possible origins: the dried plant was used to stuff mattresses; it is said that bedstraw was placed in the manger at Bethlehem when Jesus was born.

  • Small chickens get caught in this weed, hence the common name 'chicken weed'.