overlay image

Manitoba Museum

Aster (Asteraceae)

Canada Goldenrod

Solidago canadensis L.

The flowers of Canada Goldenrod are important nectar and pollen sources for insects, including bees, flies, wasps, and butterflies. Canada Goldenrod is incapable of pollinating itself, a task usually carried out by visiting insects. The plants and their seeds provide food for finches and other birds, and foraging animals (e.g. sheep, cattle, deer, horses). They have also been used by Indigenous people for medicinal and other purposes.

Flower Colour:

  • Yellow

Flowering Season:

  • Summer
  • Fall

Flowering Months:

  • August
  • July
  • October
  • September

Canadian Rarity Status:

Not rare.

Physical Appearance:

The solitary, hairy stems of this perennial grow 30 to 214 cm tall. Its lance-shaped leaves have finely-toothed margins and hairy undersides. Small flower heads occur along the upper side of each branch, and are arranged into loose, elongated clusters that bloom from the bottom up. Each head consists of several yellow ray and disc florets. The single-seeded fruits have a bristly top to aid in wind-dispersal.

Similar Species:

Giant Goldenrod (Solidago gigantea Ait.), Low Goldenrod (Solidago missouriensis Nutt.), Riddell's Goldenrod, Showy Goldenrod, Velvety Goldenrod (Solidago mollis Bartl.)

Gardening Notes:

Seeds and/or plants are typically available from greenhouses and seed supply companies specializing in native plants. Canada Goldenrod can be started by seeds, seedlings, or rhizomes. Plants can become weedy, so care should be taken to control spreading.

Canadian Distribution:

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Manitoba
  • New Brunswick
  • Newfoundland/Labrador
  • Northwest Territories
  • Nova Scotia
  • Nunavut
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
  • Yukon

Prairie Types:

  • Fescue Prairie
  • Mixed Grass Prairie
  • Tall Grass Prairie


  • Forests
  • Prairies
  • Railways
  • Roadsides
  • Slopes

Moisture Conditions:

  • Dry
  • Moderate
  • Moist

Light Preference:

  • Full Sun
  • Part Shade

Soil Preference:

  • Clay
  • Loam
  • Sand
Canada Goldenrod