Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Western Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Arrow-leaf Sweet Coltsfoot
Petasites sagittatus (Banks ex Pursh) Gray
- Family: Composite (Compositae)
- Flowering: April-June
- Field Marks: This species has large arrowhead-shaped basal leaves that are toothed as well as white-woolly on the lower surface. The whitish flowers are crowded together into heads.
- Habitat: Wet meadows, bogs, particularly in high mountains.
- Habit: Perennial herb with creeping rhizomes.
- Stems: Upright, unbranched, up to 1 1/2 feet tall, smooth or hairy, bearing a few toothless, parallel-veined bracts with a dilated tip.
- Leaves: All basal, arrowhead-shaped, up to 1 foot long, up to 10 inches wide, toothed, smooth on the upper surface, white-woolly on the lower surface, on long stalks. (What
appears to be narrow, toothless leaves on the stem are actually bracts.)
- Flowers: Many borne in heads, with several heads crowded at the tip of the stem; some
flowers ray-like and white, others tubular and white.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: 5, some united to form white rays, others united to form a whitish tube.
- Stamens: 5.
- Pistils: Ovary inferior, smooth.
- Fruits: Achenes very narrow, with a tuft of bristles at the tip.
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