PlantFiles: Common Burdock, Lesser Burdock Arctium minus
It's time to read and vote for your favorite article in the 2013 Write-Off Contest! The four finalist's articles are featured in the May 13 newsletter and can be found through this link. Hurry! Voting ends May 18.
Hardiness: USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 °C (-30 °F) USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 °C (-25 °F) USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 °C (-20 °F) USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 °C (-10 °F) USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 °C (-5 °F) USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 °C (0 °F) USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 °C (5 °F) USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 °C (10 °F) USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F) USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F) USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F) USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F) USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)
Sun Exposure: Sun to Partial Shade
Danger: Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction
Bloom Color: Blue-Violet
Bloom Time: Mid Summer Late Summer/Early Fall Mid Fall
Foliage: Grown for foliage Herbaceous Smooth-Textured
Other details: May be a noxious weed or invasive This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season
Soil pH requirements: 6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic) 6.6 to 7.5 (neutral) 7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
Patent Information: Non-patented
Propagation Methods: From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse From seed; direct sow after last frost
Seed Collecting: Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds Wear gloves to protect hands when handling seeds N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed
On May 26, 2011, plant_it from Valparaiso, IN wrote:
Tap root can go to 4ft, hard to get rid of. Little redeeming value to wildlife. Deer will browse this plant only if no other food is available. Burs stick to clothes, animal fur and can even be fatal to birds: "Common Burdock (Arctium minus) is an invasive, exotic plant that can be deadly to small birds like kinglets, warblers and bats. Burdock’s burrs act like Velcro to trap birds and bats unfortunate enough to come in contact with them." http://www.wihumane.org/wildlife/burdock.aspx
On Feb 19, 2008, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:
This species pop up rarely in gardens but are more frequent in wide open spaces, especially roadsides. They seem to like woodland edges - have large coarse leaves that look like rhubarb but feel like sandpaper. This plant can even survive in infrequently mown lawns and occidently even in frequently mown lawns. The flowers look like thistle but no other plant species have such large leaves combined with flowers. This is a vicious plant - I have read articles of birds and bugs getting stuck in the flowerheads and died - the green part of the flowers have sticky or barbed hairs that can get entangled in feathers and grab onto bugs. Don't grow it - there are better large leaf plants that is not so rough to the touch.
On Jun 25, 2007, buzzbuzz77 from Urbana, IL (Zone 5b) wrote:
Ugh...this weed has taken over a large moist area of my yard. It's very aggressive, hard to eradicate (taproot is impossible to fully remove), chokes out everything around it, and produces tons of "stickers" that just produce more plants next year if not removed. I swear they grow 2-3" a day in the summer!