IUCN threat status:

Not evaluated

Comprehensive Description

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This is a common and weedy plant with a highly variable appearance. It resembles the non-native Lactuca serriola (Prickly Lettuce), however the latter has gray achenes that are always shorter than the thread-like beaks that attach them to tufts of hair. Also, the leaves of Prickly Lettuce tend to be more blue in appearance, and they have stout prickly hairs along the central veins on the underside of their leaves. Wild Lettuce can be distinguished from other native Lactuca spp. by the color of its flowers, the appearance of its achenes with attached tufts of hairs, and the absence of hairs on its stems and leaves (aside from the scattered non-prickly hairs that may appear along the central veins on the underside of the leaves). Return

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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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