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Rhinanthus minor ssp. minor

Rhinanthus minor L. ssp. minor

Little Yellowrattle, Yellow Rattle

Scrophulariaceae (Figwort Family)

Synonym(s): Rhinanthus borealis ssp. kyrolliae, Rhinanthus crista-galli, Rhinanthus crista-galli var. fallax, Rhinanthus kyrolliae, Rhinanthus rigidus, Rhinanthus stenophyllus


USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (I), SPM (I)

An erect plant with widely spaced, opposite leaves on stem and bilaterally symmetrical flowers in spikes at top; all flowers turned to one side, each with a yellow corolla protruding from a flat calyx (as if pressed from sides).

This flower is unmistakable, but its technical classification is unsettled. Around the Northern Hemisphere there are numerous regional variants, many of which have been named as species that are accepted by some authorities but not by others. This plant is also known as Rhinanthus crista-galli; that scientific name means "snout-flower cock's comb," probably referring to the comb-like row of calyces (plural for calyx) and the snout-shaped corolla. The plant, though able to make its own food through photosynthesis, is semi-parasitic, obtaining some of its nutrients from the roots of other plants. As the common name implies, the seeds rattle in the capsule at maturity.


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Plant Characteristics

Duration: Annual
Habit: Herb

Bloom Information

Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AZ , CO , ID , ME , MT , ND , NM , NY , WA , WI
Canada: NB , NS , PE
Native Distribution: Throughout Northern Hemisphere; in West, south to northwestern Oregon, Arizona, and New Mexico; in East, south to New York and Connecticut.
Native Habitat: Meadows and fields, thickets, and moist slopes.

Find Seed or Plants

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

Additional resources

USDA: Find Rhinanthus minor ssp. minor in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Rhinanthus minor ssp. minor in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Rhinanthus minor ssp. minor


Record Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff

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