Plantago major L.

Family: Plantaginaceae

Pertinent Synonyms & Notes (particularly those used in California; go to GRIN for other synonyms)


Pertinent Common Names (particularly those used in California; go to GRIN for other common names)

broadleaf plantain

Primary Disseminule Type


Description (diagnostics are in brown)

Fruit a dehiscent (circumscissile) capsule, ovoid, 2.5–5 mm long, containing 5–16(30) seeds.

Seed elliptic or oblong (sometimes curved) to irregularly polygonal in outline, compression variable, cross-section trigonous to polygonal, rounded to flat on dorsal face, 2–4-angled on ventral face, 0.5–1.2(1.8) mm long x 0.4–0.8 mm wide x 0.3–0.6 mm thick. Surface dull to shiny (the latter under magnification), distinctly rugose (mostly longitudinally on dorsal face), yellow to reddish-brown to black.

Hilum on ventral face (usually at apex), ± round to elliptic, 0.1–0.2 mm long x 0.1–0.15 mm wide, same color or lighter than testa, commonly coated by whitish funicular remnant.

Risk Assessment (codes in yellow or red indicate cause for concern; assessments are current as of mid-2011; click AUQP, NZBORIC, or NZBPI for access to the most recent versions of these databases and possible assessment changes)