Scientific name: Hydrocotyle spp.
Abundance: plentiful
What: leaves, stems
How: raw
Where: yards, marshes, water
When: spring, summer, fall
Nutritional Value: some minerals
Dangers: Thoroughly wash plants collected from water to remove any harmful bacteria.

Leaf Arrangement: Leaves emerge singly on long petioles from creeping stems.

Leaf Shape: The leaves are round and peltate, meaning the leaf stalk attaches to the center of the leaf blade. They typically measure 1 to 2 inches in diameter.

Leaf Venation: Venation is obicular, radiating out from the central point where the petiole attaches.

Leaf Margin: The leaf margins are scalloped or toothed.

Leaf Color: Leaves are a bright, glossy green, sometimes with a slightly lighter color in the center.

Flower Structure: Small, umbrella-like clusters of tiny flowers rise on slender stalks from the leaf axils.

Flower Color: The flowers are generally white or pale green.

Fruit: Produces a small, flat fruit, not typically noticeable.

Seed: The seeds are contained within the small fruits, are minute in size.

Stem: Stems are slender, creeping, underground, and rooted at the leaf nodes.

Hairs: There are no significant hairs on the leaves or stems.

Height: The foliage and flowers typically rise a few inches above the ground, with the creeping stems spreading widely along the ground surface.

Dollarweeds domineering wood sorrel, pony's foot, and young cleavers.
Dollarweed Leaves

A yard taken over by dollarweeds.

Dollarweeds in the woods.

Dollarweeds along the shore of a pond.

Texas distribution, attributed to U. S. Department of Agriculture. The marked counties are guidelines only. Plants may appear in other counties, especially if used in landscaping.

North American distribution, attributed to U. S. Department of Agriculture.

Dollarweed is a common yard weed that drives many people nuts. The single, round leaf with a centered stem seems to explore across otherwise perfect lawns. Mowing them down or picking them leaves the roots behind which will quickly produce a new crop of green disks. These weeds vex homeowners in all but the very hottest and coldest times of the year, becoming most prevalent in the spring and fall.

Dollarweeds the size of quarters or smaller and my favorites, tasting somewhat like cucumber peels. I prefer the younger, more tender, nickel-sized "circles" over larger ones. The larger ones have a dry, slightly bitter/chalky taste. Luckily, Dollarweeds of all sizes can be fermented like cabbage to make "dollarweed-kraut" or a yard-based version of kimchee. Just pick the circles, leave the stingy, tough stems behind.

Dollar weed on left, edible Pony's Foot on right.
Dollarweed Ponys Foot

Some people get confused between dollarweed and pony's foot (Dichondra carolinensis). The leaf of dollarweed is a complete circle whereas pony's foot is cleft, giving it the shape of a horse's hoof.

Buy my book! Outdoor Adventure Guides Foraging covers 70 of North America's tastiest and easy to find wild edibles shown with the same big pictures as here on the Foraging Texas website.

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