Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara)
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Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara)
Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara)
EDRR Species?: 

Perennial, flowers in April or early spring. Grows 4 to 8 inches. Bright yellow flowers similar to dandelions appear before leaves emerge. It has white, fluffy seed heads. Large, deep-green leaves develop later, often forming a complete canopy covering the soil. Top leaf surface has a smooth, almost waxy appearance, and the underside is covered with white, wool-like hairs. Leaf stems and larger leaf veins are distinctly purple in color. Spreads by underground rhizomes, which produce dense patches of above-ground foliage ranging from 10 to 20 feet in diameter.

The most common location for coltsfoot is on roadsides, both township roads and highways. From this foothold, it can spread by seed or rhizomes to adjacent fields. While this weed does not spread rapidly, it is of concern because there are very few herbicides that will control it adequately, and it thrives in several crops.

Known hazards
Many experts warn that alkaloids found in this plant can be dangerous and that the herb should not be used internally at all. In some countries, its use has been prohibited or regulated.