prickly lettuce USDA PLANTS Symbol: LASE
U.S. Nativity: Exotic
Habit: Forbs/Herbs
Lactuca serriola L.

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Taxonomic Rank: Magnoliopsida: Asterales: Asteraceae
Synonym(s): China lettuce, wild lettuce
Native Range: Europe (BAIL);

Prickly lettuce is an annual or biennial that can reach heights of 6 ft. (1.8m). Cauline leaves (on the stem) are alternate, 2-14 in. (5-36 cm) long and become smaller up the stem. Leaves have a conspicuous, white midvein with the underside of the vein covered with many prickles. In the mid-to-late summer, ½ in. (1.3 cm) wide, yellow flowers develop in a branched inflorescence at the apex of the stem. Flowers produce dandelion-like seeds. Prickly lettuce is native to the Mediterranean region and occurs along roadsides, in abandoned fields, and other disturbed areas. It was accidentally introduced into North America in the late 1890s, possibly as a contaminant in seed.

Selected Images from Invasive.orgView All Images at Invasive.org


Plant(s);
Mary Ellen (Mel) Harte, , Bugwood.org
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Foliage; Rosette
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); habit
Forest and Kim Starr, Starr Environmental, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); habit
Forest and Kim Starr, Starr Environmental, Bugwood.org
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Foliage;
Mary Ellen (Mel) Harte, , Bugwood.org
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Feature(s); Milky sap
Tom Heutte, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
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Flower(s);
Mary Ellen (Mel) Harte, , Bugwood.org
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Flower(s);
Mary Ellen (Mel) Harte, , Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s);
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Fruit(s);
Steve Hurst, USDA NRCS PLANTS Database, Bugwood.org
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Feature(s); Prickles
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Infestation;
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, Bugwood.org
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Plant(s); USDA NRCS. Wetland flora: Field office illustrated guide to plant species. USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.
USDA PLANTS Database, USDA NRCS PLANTS Database, Bugwood.org
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EDDMapS Distribution:
This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts and records obtained from USDA Plants Database. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org
 


State(s) Where Reported invasive.
Based on state level agency and organization lists of invasive plants from WeedUS database.

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U.S. National Parks where reported invasive:
Badlands National Park (South Dakota)
Chiricahua National Monument (Arizona)
Craters of the Moon National Monument (Idaho)
Death Valley National Park (California)
Grand Canyon National Park (Arizona)
Lake Mead National Park (Nevada)
Theodore Roosevelt National Park (North Dakota)
Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming)



Invasive Listing Sources:
Faith Campbell, 1998
Jil M. Swearingen, Survey of invasive plants occurring on National Park Service lands, 2000-2007
John Randall, The Nature Conservancy, Survey of TNC Preserves, 1995.
Pacific Northwest Exotic Pest Plant Council, 1998