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artillery plant, artillery weed, pistol plant, rockweed

Caribbean clearweed

Habit Herbs, annual or short-lived perennial, 0.3-2 dm. Herbs, annual or short-lived perennial, 0.2-1 dm.

10-40-branched, erect.

5-10-branched, repent or prostrate, sometimes mat-forming.


blades spatulate to obovate, paired blades unequal, the larger 3-10 × 1.5-5.5 mm, the smaller 1.5-4 × 0.7-2 mm, margins entire.

blades broadly ovate to orbiculate, paired blades only slightly unequal, 1.5-6 × 1.6-5 mm, margins entire.





ca. 0.5 mm across.

ca. 0.2-0.3 mm across.


uniformly light brown, slightly compressed, ovoid-cylindric, ca. 0.5(-1.1) × 0.3 mm, smooth.

uniformly light brown, slightly compressed, ovoid-cylindric, ca. 0.4 × ca. 0.3 mm, pebbled.

Pilea microphylla

Pilea herniarioides

Phenology Flowering all year. Flowering fall–spring (sporadically throughout summer).
Habitat Waste places, hammocks, rocky woods, cultivated plots, on masonry Hammocks, waste places
Elevation 0-100 m (0-300 ft) 0-10 m (0-0 ft)
from FNA
FL; GA; LA; SC; HI; Mexico; Central America; West Indies; tropical South America; Asia
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from FNA
FL; Central America; West Indies; South America (Colombia)
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Pilea microphylla has been collected once in Tennessee and once in Michigan, but it is unlikely that the species persists so far north. It is widely grown as a houseplant in the north and a border plant in the south. It is a greenhouse weed in various parts of the flora.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Source FNA vol. 3. FNA vol. 3.
Parent taxa Urticaceae > Pilea Urticaceae > Pilea
Sibling taxa
P. fontana, P. herniarioides, P. pumila, P. trianthemoides
P. fontana, P. microphylla, P. pumila, P. trianthemoides
Synonyms Parietaria microphylla Urtica herniarioides
Name authority (Linnaeus) Liebmann: Naturvidensk. Math. Afd., ser. 5, 2: 296. (1851) (Swartz) Lindley: Coll. Bot., index (see also plate 4 and text on facing page). (1821)
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