Hasteola suaveolens (L.) Pojark.

False Indian Plantain

Hasteola suaveolens plant

Family - Asteraceae

Stem - Erect, to >1 m, unbranched, glabrous.

Hasteola_suaveolens_leavesStem and leaves.

Leaves - Basal and alternate. Lower leaves petiolate, hastate, sharply toothed. Upper leaves progressively smaller, with shorter petioles and hastate lobing reduced or absent.

Hasteola_suaveolens_leafLower leaf.

Inflorescence - Terminal panicle, sometimes also smaller axillary panicles.



Involucre - Cylindrical to narrowly bell-shaped, 10-14 mm. Bracts in two series, outer shorter and spreading, inner longer and appressed. Inner bracts typically whitened near apex, especially in bud.


Florets - Disk florets 20-45 per head. Corollas 8-12 mm long, white or cream colored. Pappus of numerous capillary bristles. Rays absent.



Flowering - July - September.

Habitat - Bottomland forests, streambanks.

Origin - Native to the U.S.

Other info. - This striking species is found in Missouri only in a few counties, mostly in the east-central part of the state. It is perhaps most striking when in bud, with the spreading outer involucral bracts and nearly white inner bract tips giving rise to a characteristic "starry" appearance. When open, the flowering heads attract numerous insects. Another name for this plant is Senecio suaveolens

Photographs taken along Tuque Creek, 8-19-2010, at Little Lost Creek Conservation Area, Warren County, MO, 7-12-2012, 9-6-2015, and 9-6-2016, and along the Chubb Trail, 8-29-2017 (SRTurner).