Bristly Ox-Tongue is a
perennial plant of the UK, typically found growing in grassland, field margins and waste ground, to a mature height of up to 60cm.
Bristly Ox-Tongue is native to the Mediterranean and was introduced to the UK before the sixteenth century. Its name comes from the stiff spines that cover the plant's stems and leaves, and the similarity between the rough and pimply surface of its leaves and an ox tongue. The plant's genus name of 'Helminthotheca' derives from the traditional herbal medicinal use of Bristly Ox-Tongue to treat parasitic intestinal worms, known as 'helminths'.
Botanic classification and naming: Bristly Ox-Tongue is a member of the Daisy (Asteraceae) family. The genus name
'Helminthotheca' identifies the plant as a Ox-Tongue and its species name 'echioides' means 'like Echium (Viper's Bugloss)'.
Benefits: Pollinated by bees and flies.
Benefits to wildlife are also indicated with orange icons in the plant profile bar at the top.