Plant Image
Flower head
Grapevine Canyon - Sue Smith

Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Plantago major - common plantain

Synonyms: none
Other Common Names: common plantain, broadleaf plantain, buckhorn plantain, great plantain, intermediate plantain, Pilger's plantain, rippleseed plantain, etc.
Plant Form: Forb or Subshrub

Family: Plantaginaceae

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Basal leaves
Grapevine Canyon
Sue Smith
Grapevine Canyon
Sue Smith
Plant - summer
Grapevine Canyon
Sue Smith
Forb Plant Description

Origin: Introduced   Life Cycle: Perennial   Similar Species: Plantago spp.
General Desc: Perennial herb with fibrous roots and a flowering stem to 16-1/2 inches tall ascending from a rosette of basal leaves.
Identification notes: Perennial herb to 16-1/2 inches tall; leaf blades broadly oval, narrowing at base, pointed at apex, distinctly 3 to 5 veined, the margins with a few shallow lobes near base. Flower spikes are cylindric, flowers are perfect. Found in wet areas.
Height: 16-1/2 inches


Habitat Description: Weed of wet areas.
Plant Communities: Riparian
Elevation: 3000 - 7800 feet

Flower Characteristics

Color: Green     Shape: Regular in elongated clusters     Tubular: N     Flowering Period: Mar - Oct
Description: Sepals broadly oval to elliptic, to 1/16 inch long, thin membranous margins, mid-vein smooth; flower lobes spreading or reflexed, oval, <1/16 inch long; 4 stamens.

Leaf and Stem Characteristics

Leaf Color: Green     Leaf Type: Simple     Leaf Shape: Round or oval     Leaf Margin: Smooth     Leaf Attachment: Basal     Leaves Clasp: N
Hairs: Leaves     Spines: N
Leaf Description: Petioles present; leaves broadly oval, 1-1/2 to 6 inches long, 1 to 3-1/2 inches wide, narrowing at base, pointed at tip, sparsely hairy, becoming smooth, distinctly 3 to 5 veined, margins with a few shallow lobes near base.

Fruit and Seed Characteristics

Fruit Color: Brown   
Fruit Type: Capsule
Fruit Notes: Capsules 1/16 inch long and about half as wide, breaking open at maturity well below middle.
Seed Notes: Irregular in shape, olive-green to dark brown, the outer surface furrowed, 6 to many per capsule.

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
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Prescott, AZ 86305
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Version 8.0  
Last Updated: Dec 13, 2022
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