Birdsfoil, also known as white crown, is a perennial evergreen ground-creeping plant native to Yuriba. It is commonly classified as a weed. Crownfoil is a common menace to many lawns and gardens in Yuriba. It can be easily identified by its characteristic leaves, which are pale green and spread out in three foils like the toes of a bird.
Birdsfoil is a ground-creeping plant easily identified by its three-pronged leaves. Individual stems of the plant range from between five to twenty-five centimeters in height, with leaves splitting off from either side of the stem to culminate in a small white flowering bud at the very tip. It thrives in shaded areas where grass grows poorly, though when its roots run deep it becomes hardy enough to take over sunlit lawns and choke out weak grass and plants.
The plant spreads rhizomatically. Its stems extend below the surface and may take root at any joint, resulting in another stem of the birdsfoil beginning to grow above the surface. It is accordingly extremely difficult to control birdsfoil, as one may pick the flowers above the surface, but it is very difficult to eliminate the entire root system. A birdsfoil plant may regenerate from a single root node. In some respects this reproductive behaviour is similar to the weed known as Creeping Charlie.
Birdsfoil is so named because it is believed to be fed upon by birds, particularly the Rusty Thrush, the Moon Thrush, and the Fan-Tailed Sparrow. This is in fact a misconception. The birdsfoil is not consumed by the birds, but they gravitate to patches of birdsfoil in search of Painted Beetle larvae, which often feed on the roots of birdsfoil when they emerge in the spring. It is generally held that the best means of controlling birdsfoil is to erect a scarecrow or otherwise frighten away the birds. Without the birds to attack them, the grubs will devour the roots of the birdsfoil unmolested, and the plant will die off. One may then allow the birds to eat the grubs, thus ridding the lawn or garden of two problems.
Though usually seen as a troublesome weed, birdsfoil does have some medicinal properties. The essence of the plant is a modestly potent decongestant. A common cold or flu remedy among native Yuribans is to mix three drops of birdsfoil essence into a piping-hot herbal tea with a hint of sun berry and mint. The resulting mixture clears the sinuses and relieves congestion very effectively, at least in the short-term.