Helenium flexuosum is a perennial herb, fibrous rooted, 20-120 cm tall, stems hairy, winged by extended leaf bases, branches stiffly ascending.
Leaves alternate, stalkless, base extending down stem, blade narrow, 3-12 cm long, 1-2 cm wide, the lower soon deciduous, densely sprinkled with tiny, translucent dots (use lens).
Flowers yellow, rays about 8-13, wedge-shaped, 1-2 cm long, widest at tip, 3-lobed, disk red-brown to purplish, domed, 0.6-1.5 cm wide, heads numerous, 2-3 cm wide, basal bracts finely hairy, bent outward; inflorescence branched, with leafy bracts; blooms and fruits June-Oct.
Fruit dry, 1-seeded achene, crowned with small scales.
Wetland status: FAC-.
Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent.
Origin: Southern USA.
Habitat: Moist, open areas, soil pH 4.5-7.5 (USDA, NRCS 2007).