Pink, Rose, Red, or Purple Flowered Forbs

Pink, Rose, Red & Purple Flowered Forbs
Alfalfa
Black henbane
Blue Mustard
Bull thistle
Canada thistle
Common burdock
Diffuse knapweed
Hounds-tongue
Iberian knapweed
Meadow knapweed
Musk thistle
Purple loosestrife
Purple starthistle
Red clover
Redstem filaree
Russian knapweed
Scotch thistle
Spiny plumeless thistle
Spotted knapweed
Squarrose knapweed
Tall morning-glory
Teasel

 

Hounds-tongue
Cynoglossum officinale L. (Borage family, Boraginaceae)
 

Description

Erect, coarse, 1 to 2 stemmed, biennial or short-lived perennial forb, 1 to 4 feet tall, with a thick, black, woody taproot; it forms a rosette in the first year and usually flowers in the second year; the leaves resemble a hound’s tonge.

Leaves: Basal and lower cauline leaves are petiolate, elliptic to oblanceolate, 5-7/8 to 7-7/8 inches long and 3/4 to 2 inches wide, tapering at the base; upper leaves are alternate, numerous, gradually reduced upward, acute to obtuse, and sessile or clasping, lacking teeth or lobes; all leaves are rough and hairy on both surfaces.
Flowers: Flowers May to August; flowers are many on several long, 1-sided branches from the upper leaf axils; mature flowers stalks are curved, spreading; flowers are dull reddish-purple, broadly bell-shaped (5 petals fussed), about 3/8 inch wide and terminal.

Fruit: Fruit consists of 1 to 4 nutlets, 3/16 to 1/4 inch long, rounded-triangular, dorsally flattened, and covered with short, barbed prickles; nutlets remain closed at maturity, the seeds remain encased; seeds are brown or grayish brown.

Habitat

Cultivated and disturbed or degraded sites in grassland, woodland, forest, and riparian communities, and roadsides; it is most abundant in areas with more than 10 percent bare ground within elevations that generally range from 4,900 to 9,800 feet.

Propagation/Phenology

Reproduces by seed; estimates of total seed produced per plant range from 50 to more than 2,000; the barbed nutlet facilitates dispersal by animals.

Comments

Native to Europe; hounds-tongue colonizes easily, and quickly forms dense monocultures on disturbed habitats; hounds-tongue contains pyrrolizidine alkaloids and is toxic to horses and cattle. This species generally occurs as a weed in wildland areas of the Southwestern Region rather than as an invasive plant.

Collage of 4 images of Hounds-tongue

 

 
Forest Service Shield
Invasive plants and weeds of the national forests and grasslands in the southwestern region
Hounds-tongue flower and fruit Hounds-tongue plant in bloom Hounds-tongue flowers Hounds-tongue taproot