Vascular – Exotic
Herbs - Dicotyledonous composites
The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.
Terrestrial. Grassland, roadsides, riverbanks, riverbeds and gold tailings, beech forest, scrub, pine forest.
A perennial herb with erect stems to 15-75 cm tall, having long hairs. Leaves dull green and slightly paler or purplish underneath; 3-15 cm long x 2-7 cm wide; mostly confined to based of stem. Leaves have dense hairs above and often underneath, where long hairs are also present. Flowers occur on straight and erect stems with 2 to 7 bright yellow flower heads per stem. Flowers are never striped, unlike some other hawkweeds. Mainly flowers from Dec-Mar. Fruits are small, dry and black, containing only one seed, the pappus (sheath crowning the seed) is 6-7 mm long and is coloured off-white.
H. lepidulum is very similar to H. pollichiae, but is easily recognised as its leaves are uniformly green rather than streaked with purple.
December, January, February, March
(November) - December - March - (May)
C. and N. Europe
Reason for introduction
Perennial. Seed only, does not have stolons. Seed produced December to March. Seed is spread by wind, clothing and animal pelts.
Tolerates low rainfall and poor soils.
hieracium: From the Greek hierax ‘hawk’. Pliny the Elder (AD 23 - AD 79) believed the plant to be eaten by hawks to improve their eyesight.
References and further reading
Johnson, A. T. and Smith, H. A (1986). Plant Names Simplified: Their pronunciation, derivation and meaning. Landsman Bookshop Ltd: Buckenhill, UK.