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Pest Information

Buckhorn Plantain

Buckhorn Plantain

  • Latin Name: Plantago Lanceolata
  • Common Name: Buckhorn Plantain
  • Other Names: English plantain, narrow-leaved plantain, rib-grass, ribwort, black-jacks, buck plantain, blue-jacks, black plantain, ribbed plantain.

Pest Details

Buckhorn Plantain


Introduced from Europe, and now found throughout the United States and Canada.


A short-lived perennial or sometimes a biennial. Buckhorn plantain is a common weed problem in waste areas, turf, landscape, many crop situations, and moist areas. It is tolerant of dry, compacted soils and is able to adapt to close mowing of turf. Reproduction is from seeds as well as re-growth of shoots from the base of the parent plant. Seeds can germinate and seedlings can survive even in dense, well maintained turf. This is one of the host food plants of the Buckeye Butterfly caterpillar.


Mature plants have long, narrow leaves that have the veins running from the base to the tip. Leaves grow in a rosette at the base and may be as long as 10 inches but less than ½ inch wide. They are covered with short, soft hairs and have long, silky hairs at the base. Flower stalks are from 6 to 20 inches long, produced through the summer, and the flower head forms at the end of the stalk as a dense, compact, cone-like spike. The flowers themselves are inconspicuous, but have protruding white stamens that are quite noticeable. The roots are fibrous, but produced from a short, woody taproot-like underground stem.

Characteristicts Important to Control:

This is a perennial that can re-grow from the roots. Hand removal is difficult due to the taproot, and the plants are tolerant of most landscape and waste area habitats.

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