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Taraxacum officinale (Common dandelion)
San Antonio River Authority

Taraxacum officinale

Taraxacum officinale F.H. Wigg.

Common dandelion, Blowball, Dandelion, Faceclock

Asteraceae (Aster Family)



USDA Native Status: L48 (NI), AK (NI), HI (I), PR (I), CAN (NI), GL (NI), SPM (I)

Unpublished. Non-native species. JAM. A common weed, its solitary flower head, each with numerous yellow ray flowers, tops a hollow, leafless stalk that rises from the center of a rosette of toothed leaves. Stem juice is milky.

Unpublished. Non-native species. JAM. The popular name comes from dent de lion, French for lions tooth, referring to the teeth on the leaves. The young leaves may be used in salads and soups; wine is made from the heads. Several species, some native to high mountain meadows, are similar to the Common Dandelion but may have reddish-brown fruits and outer bracts that do not curl.


From the Image Gallery

1 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Leaf Shape: Runcinate
Leaf: Green
Size Class: 1-3 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Jan , Feb , Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct , Nov , Dec


USA: AK , AL , AR , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , HI , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , MT , NC , ND , NE , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OK , OR , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV , WY
Canada: NB , NL , NS , ON , PE , QC
Native Distribution: Throughout North America, but rare in extreme southeastern United States.
Native Habitat: Throughout

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil pH: Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
Soil Description: Esamy


Use Food: The tender young leaves, rich in vitamins and minerals, make good salad or cooked greens. The delicate yellow flowers can be added to fritters and pancakes or made into wine. (Kershaw)
Use Medicinal: The mildly laxative and diuretic leaves have been used in medicinal teas, digestive aids, diet drinks and rustic beers. (Kershaw) Tea of roots drunk for heartburn. Tea of leaves for tonic. Blossoms boiled with pennyroyal (Hedeoma pulegioides) leaves and drank to releive menstrual cramsp. (Weiner)
Conspicuous Flowers: yes

Mr. Smarty Plants says

The most common wildflower in North America
January 16, 2008
Hi Mr. Smartyplants, What the most common wildflower in North America? My friend thinks it's the oxeye daisy. Is this correct? I work for a puzzle publishing company, and am doing research for a the...
view the full question and answer

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Fredericksburg Nature Center - Fredericksburg, TX
Pineywoods Native Plant Center - Nacogdoches, TX
Sibley Nature Center - Midland, TX
Brackenridge Field Laboratory - Austin, TX

Herbarium Specimen(s)

NPSOT 0778 Collected Jan 12, 1994 in Bexar County by Harry Cliffe

1 specimen(s) available in the Digital Herbarium


Bibref 1207 - Earth Medicine, Earth Food (1990) Michael A. Weiner
Bibref 281 - Shinners & Mahler's Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas (1999) Diggs, G. M.; B. L. Lipscomb; B. O'Kennon; W. F...
Bibref 328 - Wildflowers of Texas (2003) Ajilvsgi, Geyata.
Bibref 286 - Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country (1989) Enquist, M.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Additional resources

USDA: Find Taraxacum officinale in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Taraxacum officinale in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Taraxacum officinale


Record Modified: 2012-07-02
Research By: TWC Staff

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