Agrimonia pubescens is a perennial herb to 1 m tall; stems stout, densely short-hairy; roots thick-tuberous.
Leaves alternate, widely spaced, pinnately compound, leaflets 5-13, narrow, velvety-hairy below, coarsely toothed, with 1-3 irregular pairs of much smaller leaflets between larger pairs, stipules lanceolate, toothed.
Flowers yellow, radially symmetrical, about 0.7 cm, petals 5, base of flower (calyx tube) enlarged, rimmed above with hooked bristles; inflorescence stalk densely hairy, unbranched; blooms July-Sept.
Fruit dry, top-shaped, old calyx tube 0.3 cm long, deeply furrowed and hairy, top half of fruit covered with hard, hooked bristles, above calyx tube, tip beaked, 2-seeded. Dispersed by attachment to fur or clothing.
Wetland status: UPL.
Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent.
Habitat: Open upland woods.
Notes: Winter plant with spike-like racemes of small top-shaped fruits, upper half bristle-covered (Brown 1976).