Scientific NameSilene vulgaris
Other Common Names:
Synonyms (former Scientific Names):
Leaves: Initially develop as somewhat of a basal rosette. Leaves are ovate to lance-shaped, and are easily confused as the leaves of a grass when this occurs as a weed in grass forages. Leaves are approximately 1 1/4 to 3 inches long and are without hairs. Stems: Erect, branching, reaching 3 1/3 feet in height. Stems are without hairs. Roots: Rhizomes and a fibrous root system.
An erect or low-growing perennial from rhizomes with 'bladder-like' flowers. Bladder campion is primarily a weed of pastures and hay fields, but may also occur along roadsides or in other forage crops. The hairless, opposite leaves and lobed, bladder-like flowers are all characteristics that help in the identification of bladder campion. White Campion (Silene alba) is very similar in appearance and growth habit, but has hairs on the leaves and stems unlike bladder campion.
Flower Seed Head
Flowers: Occur in clusters of 5 to 30 white flowers that are each approximately 20 mm in width. Individual flowers consist of 5 white petals that are deeply lobed or split and resemble a "V". The flowers also have bladder-like cases which are actually fused inflated sepals with 20 distinct pink to white veins.
Seedlings: Cotyledons are 3 to 12 mm long, 1 to 2 1/2 mm wide, elliptical in outline, without hairs, and yellowish green in color. Fruit: A round capsule within the 'bladder.' Each fruit is approximately 1/2 inch long.
This weed occurs throughout most of the United States.
prostrate and nonwoody
Thorns or Spines
Approximate Flower Diameter
Dominant Flower Color
shorter than leaf
Stem Cross Section
square or multi-edged