Page author: David Giblin
Tragopogon pratensis
jack go to bed at noon, meadow salsify

Distribution: Occurring on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to California, east across North America to the Atlantic Coast.

Habitat: Roadsides, fields and waste places, usually in slightly moist areas.

Flowers: May-August

Origin: Introduced from Europe

Growth Duration: Biennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Mostly glabrous biennial, often branched, 1.5-8 dm. tall, with milky juice.


Leaves elongate, up to 30 cm. long and 2 cm. wide, abruptly narrowed a little above the base, the margins wavy, the tips recurved.


Heads solitary at the ends of branches, the peduncles not enlarged under the heads; involucral bracts in a single series, equal, about 8, 12-24 mm. long in flower, equaling or shorter than the chrome-yellow, ligulate corollas, elongating to 18-38 mm. in fruit; pappus of a single series of whitish, uneven-length, plumose bristles, the plume branches interwebbed.


Achenes 15-25 mm. long, the body abruptly contracted to the slender, relatively short beak.

Accepted Name:
Tragopogon pratensis L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 2: 789. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Tragopogon pratensis L. ssp. pratensis
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Tragopogon pratensis in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Tragopogon pratensis checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Tragopogon pratensis atlas page.

CalPhotos: Tragopogon pratensis photos.

USDA Plants: Tragopogon pratensis information.

45 photographs:
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