Canada goldenrod

Prepared by Jennifer L. D’Appollonio, Assistant Scientist, University of Maine, Orono, ME 04469. Updated February 2018.

Scientific name: Solidago canadensis L.

Common name(s): Canada goldenrod, Canadian goldenrod, tall goldenrod, giant goldenrod

Links: USDA PLANTS Profile , NPIN Profile, Go Botany

Images: (to see enlargements [PC]: click on image, then right click and choose “view image”)


– perennial

– generally flowers July to September in ME

-Stems are smooth

-leaves are

  • 1′-5′ tall
  • narrowly lance-shaped
  • sharply toothed
  • 2″-5″ long and 0.25″-0.75″ wide.

-Small orange-yellow pyramidal flower heads

-conspicuously re-curved branches, usually borne in the upper side of the inflorescence.

-inhibits the growth of sugar maple through allelopathy

– many goldenrod species in New England, and closely related species may hybridize.  Two varieties in New England, var. hargeri and var. canadensis, differentiated by pubescence. May also be confused with S. altissima or S. gigantea, also differentiated by pubescence.  See left sidebar of Go Botany webpage


-disturbed sites

-meadows and fields



Haines, A., Farnsworth, E., Morrison, G., & New England Wild Flower Society. (2011). New England Wildflower Society’s Flora Novae Angliae: A manual for the identification of native and naturalized higher vascular plants of New England. Framingham, MA: New England Wild Flower Society. p. 431.

Heinrich, B. 1976. Flowering phenologies: Bog, woodland, and disturbed habitats. Ecology. 57(5):890-899.

Go Botany. “Solidago Canadensis L.” Solidago Canadensis (Canada Goldenrod): Go Botany, 2021,