Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Glycyrrhiza lepidota
American licorice, wild licorice

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to California, east to Ontario and Texas.

Habitat: Stream and riverbanks, riparian corridors, and other wet areas, often associated with disturbance.

Flowers: May-August

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Glandular, perennial herbs from extensive, aromatic, woody rhizomes, the stems 3-12 dm. tall.


Leaves alternate, odd-pinnate, the leaflets 7-15, lanceolate to oblong, 2-4 cm. long; stipules small, linear, deciduous.


Flowers numerous in dense, bracteate spikes on long peduncles arising from the leaf axils; calyx broadly tubular, with 5 awl-shaped teeth; corolla pea-like, creamy-yellow, 10-15 mm. long, the banner only slightly reflexed from the narrow wings and acuminate keel; stamens 10; style straight.


Pod 10-15 mm. long, densely covered with hooked bristles.

Accepted Name:
Glycyrrhiza lepidota Pursh
Publication: Fl. Amer. Sept. 2: 480 [1813]. 1814.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Glycyrrhiza glutinosa Nutt.
Glycyrrhiza lepidota Pursh var. glutinosa (Nutt.) S. Watson [HC]
Glycyrrhiza lepidota Pursh var. lepidota [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Glycyrrhiza lepidota in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Glycyrrhiza lepidota checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Glycyrrhiza lepidota atlas page.

CalPhotos: Glycyrrhiza lepidota photos.

USDA Plants: Glycyrrhiza lepidota information.

59 photographs:
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