- Buckhorn plantain, Narrowleaf plantain, Rib-grass, Ribwort, Black-jacks
- An herbaceous perennial, 9-24 inches tall. Clump forming plants that grow from a basal rosette of leaves.
- long, basal
- lance shaped
- slender, tapering
- 3-5 ribbed
- flower stalks slender
- long or held high
- White, four-petaled flowers that grow on dense spikes in tight clusters of numerous small, tapering, flowers. Bushy flowers held by a long, slender, grooved stalk. Blooms from April to November.
- 2-seeded tan to brown capsules
- seeds brown, shiny, indented, sticky when wet
- waste places, roadsides, sidewalks
- dry sandy soil
- seeds become sticky when wet, and cling to passing animals or humans
- basal rosettes of leaves may form adjacent to parent plant
Key ID Features:
- 3-5 ribbed
- spikes white
- held on long, slender, grooved stalk
- Resembles Seaside Plantain (P. juncoides) which has 1-veined leaves, longer flower head and held on a shorter stalk. The flower stalk also resembles Common Plantain which has broad short leaves.
- Bracted plantain (P. aristata) also resembles English plantain, but has narrower, hairier leaves that lack deep ribs, and hairy bracts on the flower spikes.
- This species can displace native vegetation in disturbed areas.
- On Nantucket, while this species is sometimes seen in minimally managed habitats, dense populations are restricted to disturbed sites. Typically a roadside weed.
Growth Form: Herb
Level of Invasiveness for Nantucket: Do not list at this time
Level of Invasiveness for Massachusetts: Not evaluated
Massachusetts Cultivation Restrictions: no