Plantago lanceolata - L.
English Plantain
Other English Common Names: Buckhorn Plantain, Narrowleaf Plantain
Other Common Names: narrowleaf plantain
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Plantago lanceolata L. (TSN 32874)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.133397
Element Code: PDPLN020R0
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Plantain Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Plantaginales Plantaginaceae Plantago
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Plantago lanceolata
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 22Mar1994
Global Status Last Changed: 22Mar1994
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Reasons: Abundant in fields and waste places through most of Europe and North America.
Nation: United States
National Status: NNA
Nation: Canada
National Status: NNA (14Oct2016)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
United States Alabama (SNA), Alaska (SNA), Arizona (SNA), Arkansas (SNA), California (SNA), Colorado (SNA), Connecticut (SNA), Delaware (SNA), District of Columbia (SNA), Florida (SNA), Georgia (SNR), Hawaii (SNA), Idaho (SNA), Illinois (SNA), Indiana (SNA), Iowa (SNA), Kansas (SNA), Kentucky (SNA), Louisiana (SNA), Maine (SNA), Maryland (SNA), Massachusetts (SNR), Michigan (SNA), Minnesota (SNA), Mississippi (SNA), Missouri (SNA), Montana (SNA), Nebraska (SNA), Nevada (SNA), New Hampshire (SNA), New Jersey (SNA), New Mexico (SNA), New York (SNA), North Carolina (SNA), North Dakota (SNA), Ohio (SNA), Oklahoma (SNA), Oregon (SNA), Pennsylvania (SNA), Rhode Island (SNA), South Carolina (SNA), South Dakota (SNA), Tennessee (SNA), Texas (SNA), Utah (SNA), Vermont (SNA), Virginia (SNA), Washington (SNA), West Virginia (SNA), Wisconsin (SNA), Wyoming (SNA)
Canada British Columbia (SNA), Manitoba (SNA), New Brunswick (SNA), Newfoundland Island (SNA), Nova Scotia (SNA), Ontario (SNA), Prince Edward Island (SNA), Quebec (SNA), Saskatchewan (SNA)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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U.S. States and Canadian Provinces
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The distribution shown may be incomplete, particularly for some rapidly spreading exotic species.

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AKexotic, ALexotic, ARexotic, AZexotic, CAexotic, COexotic, CTexotic, DCexotic, DEexotic, FLexotic, GA, HIexotic, IAexotic, IDexotic, ILexotic, INexotic, KSexotic, KYexotic, LAexotic, MA, MDexotic, MEexotic, MIexotic, MNexotic, MOexotic, MSexotic, MTexotic, NCexotic, NDexotic, NEexotic, NHexotic, NJexotic, NMexotic, NVexotic, NYexotic, OHexotic, OKexotic, ORexotic, PAexotic, RIexotic, SCexotic, SDexotic, TNexotic, TXexotic, UTexotic, VAexotic, VTexotic, WAexotic, WIexotic, WVexotic, WYexotic
Canada BCexotic, MBexotic, NBexotic, NFexotic, NSexotic, ONexotic, PEexotic, QCexotic, SKexotic

Range Map
No map available.

Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: Plant, perennial dicot.
Habitat Comments: Waste places and mown or grazed fields.
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank)
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Disclaimer: While I-Rank information is available over NatureServe Explorer, NatureServe is not actively developing or maintaining these data. Species with I-RANKs do not represent a random sample of species exotic in the United States; available assessments may be biased toward those species with higher-than-average impact.

I-Rank: High/Low
Rounded I-Rank: Unknown
I-Rank Reasons Summary: Plantago lanceolata is very widespread. It occurs in every U.S. state and the District of Columbia (Kartesz 1999). It occurs on all of the main Hawaiian islands except Hihau and Kahoolawe (Wagner et al. 1999). Plantago lanceolata commonly occurs in disturbed areas such as roadsides, waste places, and pastures as well as in manicured areas such as lawns, gardens, and cultivated fields. However, it can also invade native grasslands. In the San Francisco area of California, it occurs in coastal grasslands and is outcompeting native species including at least one plant species of conservation significance. It may also impact biodiversity in Hawaii in subalpine shrubland and mesic forest communities. Plantago lanceolata rapidly colonizes open areas and forms dense swards that crowd out native vegetation and prevent the establishment of native species. It has seeds that may remain viable in the soil for 10 years. It is not known to invade intact vegetation but more information is needed. More information is also needed about its negative impacts across the region and its trends.
Subrank I - Ecological Impact: High/Low
Subrank II - Current Distribution/Abundance: Medium
Subrank III - Trend in Distribution/Abundance: High/Low
Subrank IV - Management Difficulty: High/Low
I-Rank Review Date: 23Mar2004
Evaluator: Tomaino, A.
Native anywhere in the U.S?
Native Range: Native to Europe, North Africa, and Asia (Weber 2003).

Download "An Invasive Species Assessment Protocol: Evaluating Non-Native Plants for their Impact on Biodiversity". (PDF, 1.03MB)
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Screening Questions

S-1. Established outside cultivation as a non-native? YES
Comments: Established outside cultivation in the U.S. (Kartesz 1999).

S-2. Present in conservation areas or other native species habitat? Yes
Comments: A weed of lawns, meadows, pastures, waste places, and grasslands in the U.S. (ARS 1970).

Subrank I - Ecological Impact: High/Low

1. Impact on Ecosystem Processes and System-wide Parameters:Medium significance/Insignificant
Comments: No mention of changes in abiotic ecosystem processes or system-wide parameters found in the literature; assumption is that any alterations are not major/irreversible.

2. Impact on Ecological Community Structure:Medium/Low significance
Comments: It is a perennial herb (Weber 2003). It rapidly colonizes open areas and forms dense swards that crowd out native vegetation and prevent the establishment of native species (Weber 2003).

3. Impact on Ecological Community Composition:High/Moderate significance
Comments: It rapidly colonizes open areas and forms dense swards that crowd out native vegetation and prevent the establishment of native species (Weber 2003).

4. Impact on Individual Native Plant or Animal Species:High/Low significance
Comments: In a coastal grassland in the San Francisco area, a population of shooting star (Dodecatheon clevelandii?) was replaced by several exotics including Plantago lanceolata (Sigg 2003).

5. Conservation Significance of the Communities and Native Species Threatened:High/Low significance
Comments: In a coastal grassland in the San Francisco area, a population of shooting star (Dodecatheon clevelandii?) was replaced by several exotics including Plantago lanceolata (Sigg 2003). Sigg (2003), predicts that at one coastal grassland site Piperia elegans, Eriogonum latifolium, Sisyrinchium bellum, and Nassella pulchra will be displaced by Hypochaeris radicata and Plantago lanceolata in a few years and at another site Hypochaeris radicata and Plantago lanceolata will replace the native grasses in a decade or two. At another coastal grassland site, Sigg (2003) predicts that Clarkia rubicunda, Dudleya farinosa, Eriogonum latifolium, Agoseris apargioides, and Nassella pulchra will be replaced by Plantago lanceolata. In Hawaii, it sometimes occurs in subalpine dry shrubland and in open sites in mesic forest (Wagner et al. 1999).

Subrank II. Current Distribution and Abundance: Medium

6. Current Range Size in Nation:High significance
Comments: Occurs in every state and the District of Columbia (Kartesz 1999). It occurs on all of the main Hawaiian islands except Hihau and Kahoolawe (Wagner et al. 1999).

7. Proportion of Current Range Where the Species is Negatively Impacting Biodiversity:Low significance/Insignificant
Comments: Plantago lanceolata is a weed of lawns, meadows, pastures, waste places, and grasslands in the U.S. (ARS 1970). It is common in lawns and along roadsides, particularly in moister parts of the temperate zone (Gleason and Cronquist). In the Great Plains, it is locally common in lawns, pastures, fields, roadsides, and waste places, and less common to the north and west (Great Plains Flora Association 1986). In Michigan, it occurs in disturbed or waste ground everywhere, including on roadsides, railroads, parking lots, gravel pits, farmyards, filled land, lawns, fields, river banks, and in borders and clearings in woods and pine plantations (Voss 1996). Although it often occurs in human cultivated or disturbed areas, it does also apparently impact biodiversity in grasslands, especially coastal grasslands near urban areas in California. Plantago lanceolata is a common and troublesome weed of grasslands (ARS 1970). In California, it occurs in coastal grasslands with rare plants in the San Francisco area (Sigg 2003). It may also impact biodiversity in Hawaii in subalpine shrubland and mesic forest communities. In Hawaii, it sometimes occurs in open sites in mesic forest and subalpine shrubland (Wagner et al. 1999).

8. Proportion of Nation's Biogeographic Units Invaded:High significance
Comments: Plantago lanceolata occurs in every state and the District of Columbia (Kartesz 1999). Presumeably, it occurs in more than 50% of the biogeographic units in the region of interest (inferred from TNC 2001).

9. Diversity of Habitats or Ecological Systems Invaded in Nation:Medium/Low significance
Comments: Plantago lanceolata is a weed of lawns, meadows, pastures, waste places, and grasslands in the U.S. (ARS 1970). It is common in lawns and along roadsides, particularly in moister parts of the temperate zone (Gleason and Cronquist). In Hawaii, it is sometimes locally common in beach parks, coastal sites, open pastures, and open sites in mesic forest and subalpine shrubland (Wagner et al. 1999). It occurs in coastal grasslands in California (Sigg 2003), as well as waste places, lawns, and roadsides (Baldwin et al. 2004). In Michigan, it occurs on roadsides, railroads, parking lots, gravel pits, farmyards, filled land, lawns, fields, river banks, and in borders and clearings in woods and pine plantations (Voss 1996). In the Great Plains, it is locally common in lawns, pastures, fields, roadsides, and waste places (Great Plains Flora Association 1986).

Subrank III. Trend in Distribution and Abundance: High/Low

10. Current Trend in Total Range within Nation:High/Low significance
Comments: It occurs in distrubed areas (ARS 1970). Disturbed areas are not declining, therefore it is presumed to not be declining.

11. Proportion of Potential Range Currently Occupied:Low significance/Insignificant
Comments: Plantago lanceolata occurs in every state and the District of Columbia (Kartesz 1999). It is common in lawns and along roadsides, particularly in moister parts of the temperate zone (Gleason and Cronquist). Presumeably, it occupies at least 31% of its potential range in the region of interest (inferred from USDA 1990).

12. Long-distance Dispersal Potential within Nation:High/Moderate significance
Comments: The seeds are sticky and adhere to animals (Weber 2003). 1000 seeds weigh 1 to 3 grams (Sagar and Harper 1964).

13. Local Range Expansion or Change in Abundance:High/Low significance
Comments: It occurs in disturbed areas (ARS 1970). Disturbed areas are not declining, therefore it is presumed to not be stable or declining.

14. Inherent Ability to Invade Conservation Areas and Other Native Species Habitats:Low significance
Comments: It rapidly colonizes open areas (Weber 2003). Plantago lanceolata is a weed of lawns, meadows, pastures, waste places, and grasslands in the U.S. (ARS 1970). In Michigan, is occurs in disturbed or waste ground everywhere, including on roadsides, railroads, parking lots, gravel pits, farmyards, filled land, lawns, fields, river banks, and in borders and clearings in woods and pine plantations (Voss 1996). In Hawaii, it sometimes invades open sites in mesic forest and subalpine shrubland and is locally common in beach parks, coastal sites, and open pastures (Wagner et al. 1999). It occurs in coastal grasslands in the San Franciso area of California (Sigg 2003), as well as waste places, lawns, and roadsides (Baldwin et al. 2004). Apparently, it requires an opening to invade.

15. Similar Habitats Invaded Elsewhere:Moderate significance
Comments: It occurs in Canada (Kartesz 1999) where it occurs in grasslands, fields, and waste places (Scoggan 1978). Plantago lanceolata also occurs in South Africa, where it infests orchards and vineyards (Heap 2003). According to Weber (2003), it invades grassland and heathland, riparian habitats, freshwater wetlands, and coastal dunes. Information from the region of interest did not indicate that it has invaded freshwater wetlands. These are presumed to be habitats invaded elsewhere it has not yet invaded in the region of interest.

16. Reproductive Characteristics:Moderate significance
Comments: It reproduces both vegetatively and by seed (Sagar and Harper 1964). Seeds remain viable in the soil for a long time (Weber 2003). After 10 years of burial at 12 inches depth in soil, 8% of seeds germinated (Brenchley 1918 in Sagar and Harper 1964). It is estimated that the viability limit of buried seed is 50-60 years (Chippindale and Milton 1934 in Sagar and Harper 1964). The number of seeds per plant is not known but approximately half of the capsules have 2 seeds and approximately half have 1 seed (Dowling 1935 in Sagar and Harper 1964).

Subrank IV. General Management Difficulty: High/Low

17. General Management Difficulty:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Grazing or mowing may reduce its growth (Weber 2003). There are several effective herbicides (Weber 2003). In badly infested lawns and meadows it is easier to thoroughly culitvate and replant than to dig out individual plants (Muencher 1955). In South Africa, there are populations of Plantago lanceolata that have evolved resistance to Group G/9 herbicides including glyphosate (Heap 2003). After 10 years of burial at 12 inches depth in soil, 8% of seeds germinated (Brenchley 1918 in Sagar and Harper 1964). It is estimated that the viability limit of buried seed is 50-60 years (Chippindale and Milton 1934 in Sagar and Harper 1964).

18. Minimum Time Commitment:High/Moderate significance
Comments: After 10 years of burial at 12 inches depth in soil, 8% of seeds germinated (Brenchley 1918 in Sagar and Harper 1964). It is estimated that the viability limit of buried seed is 50-60 years (Chippindale and Milton 1934 in Sagar and Harper 1964).

19. Impacts of Management on Native Species:Unknown

20. Accessibility of Invaded Areas:High/Low significance
Comments: Plantago lanceolata is one of the most palatable species to sheep and is a very good source of several minerals (Milton 1933 in Sagar and Harper 1964). Since it is a good food source for grazing animals, there may be at least some accessibility issues.
Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 01Mar1991
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Broaddus, Lynn

Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Agricultural Research Service. 1970. Common weeds of the United States. Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. Washington, D.C. 463 pp.

  • Baldwin, B.G., S. Boyd, B.J. Ertter, D.J. Keil, R.W. Patterson, T.J. Rosatti and D.H. Wilken. 2004.
    Jepson Flora Project, Jepson Online Interchange for California Floristics. Regents of the University of California, Berkeley. Online. Available: http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/jepson_flora_project.html (Accessed 2004).

  • Gleason, H.A., and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York. 910 pp.

  • Great Plains Flora Association (R.L. McGregor, coordinator; T.M. Barkley, ed., R.E. Brooks and E.K. Schofield, associate eds.). 1986. Flora of the Great Plains. University Press of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas. 1392 pp.

  • Heap, I. 2003. The International Survey of Herbicide Resistant Weeds. Supported by the Herbicide Resistance Action Committee (HRAC), the North American Herbicide Resistance Action Committee (NAHRAC), and the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA). Online. Available: www.weedscience.com (accessed 2004).

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1999. A synonymized checklist and atlas with biological attributes for the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. First edition. In: Kartesz, J.T., and C.A. Meacham. Synthesis of the North American Flora, Version 1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, N.C.

  • Meades, S.J. & Hay, S.G; Brouillet, L. 2000. Annotated Checklist of Vascular Plants of Newfoundland and Labrador. Memorial University Botanical Gardens, St John's NF. 237pp.

  • Muenscher, W. C. 1955. Weeds. The MacMillan Co., New York.

  • Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk Project (PIER). 2003. November 9-last update. Plant Threats to Pacific Ecosystems: Acacia mearnsii. Online. Available: http://www.hear.org/pier/threats.htm. Accessed 2004, January 14.

  • Sagar, G. R., and J. L. Harper. 1964. Biological Flora of the British Isles Plantago major L., P. media L. and P. lanceolata L. Journal of Ecology 52(1): 189-221.

  • Scoggan, H.J. 1978-1979. The flora of Canada: Parts 1-4. National Museums Canada, Ottawa. 1711 pp.

  • Sigg, J. 2003. Consider the weeds of the field - my, how they grow! Fremontia 31(1): 8-12.[http://www.cnps.org/publications/Fremontia_Vol31-No2.pdf]

  • The Nature Conservancy. 2001. Map: TNC Ecoregions of the United States. Modification of Bailey Ecoregions. Online . Accessed May 2003.

  • USDA Agricultural Research Service. 1990. USDA Plants Hardiness Zone Map. Misc. Publ. Number 1475.

  • Voss, E.G. 1996. Michigan Flora. Part III. Dicots (Pyrolaceae-Compositae). Cranbrook Institute of Science Bulletin 61 and Univ. Michigan Herbarium. Ann Arbor, Michigan. 622 pp.

  • Wagner, W.L., D.R. Herbst, and S.H. Sohmer. 1999. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawaii. Revised edition. Volumes 1 and 2. Univ. Hawaii Press and Bishop Museum Press, Honolulu. 1919 pp.

  • Weber, E. 2003. Invasive plant species of the world: a reference guide to environmental weeds. CABI Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts. 548 pp.

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