Cynoglossum officinale

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Taxonomy
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Lamiales
Family: Boraginaceae
Genus: Cynoglossum
Species: officinale
Scientific Name
Cynoglossum officinale
L.
Common Names

houndstongue, gypsyflower

Overview

Appearance
Cynoglossum officinale is a biennial plant that can grow from 8-48 in. (0.2-1.2 m) tall. The first year’s growth is strictly vegetative with flowering occurs the second year.
Foliage
The first year, the basal leaves are petiolate, elliptical, dark green and 6-8 in. (15.2-20.3 cm) long. The leaves on the flowering stem are alternate and narrower towards the top of the plant.
Flowers
In the early summer, flowers appear in racemes from the axils of the upper leaves. Flowers are reddish-purple with a five-lobed corolla.
Fruit
Each flower can produce up to 4 fruits. The fruits are nutlets, the surfaces of which are flat and densely covered with small, barbed hooks (glochidia) that facilitate dispersal by animals.
Ecological Threat
Cynoglossum officinale invades disturbed areas, roadsides, rangeland, old fields and meadows, forest margins, riparian zones and coastal sand dunes. It is native to Eurasia.

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