Stem

  • Up to 4 ft. tall and covered with long hairs
Photo of houndstongue plant in the grass
 

Leaves

  • Alternate; resemble a hound’s tongue; lance-shaped, 1-12 in. long, 1-3 in. wide, rough texture and covered with long hairs; edges (margins) lack teeth and lobes
  • Leaf stems (petioles) on lower but not upper leaves; leaves decrease in size from bottom to top of plant 
Photo of houndstongue plant

 

Flower

  • Purplish-red flowers with 5 petals; occur in clusters
  • 4 nutlets (seeds) per flower, 0.25 in. long and brownish at maturity; covered with short prickles that can attach to clothing or animal fur 
Photo of houndstongue plant with dark red flowers
 

Root

  • Thick, deep taproot
Photo of houndstongue plant with small purple flowers
 

 

Other

  • Grows best in moist areas; often found in pastures, roadsides, fencelines, waste areas and along waterways; known to occur in Elko, Lincoln and White Pine counties
  • Biennial, but sometimes annual or perennial; reproduces by seed
  • Toxic to livestock, especially horses; has a distinctive odor that may cause animals to avoid
Photo of houndstongue seeds on shoelaces
Photo of houndstongue seeds

Control

  • Mowing or tillage prior to seed production is effective
  • Apply 2,4-D or glyphosate to actively growing plants prior to bloom; aminopyralid, chlorsulfuron, imazapic, imazapyr, metsulfuron or picloram pre- to post emergence
Blecker, L., Creech, E., Dick, J., Gephart, S., Hefner, M., Kratsch, H., Moe, A., Schultz, B. 2020, Nevada Noxious Weed Field Guide – Houndstongue, Extension, University of Nevada, Reno, Field Guide

Learn more about the author(s)

 

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