Lactuca saligna L. - Willow-leaf Lettuce.

Taxonomic position.

Family Asteraceae Dumort. genus Lactuca L.

Morphology and biology.

Annual or biennial herbaceous plant 30-80 cm tall. Stem glabrous, erect, with long rod-like branches arising from base. Leaves beneath at midrib studded with dense, often bent hook-like bristles. Cauline leaves lanceolate-linear or linear, with almost entire margins, with sagittate base. Florets yellow, aggregated in calathids located at ends of thin rod-like branches to form lax spike-shaped raceme. Fruits brown achenes bearing 5-7 longitudinal ribs at each side. Achenes shorter than thin filiform pale beaks. Pappus consists of white silky hairs 5 mm long.
Entomophilous. Flowers in July - August, fruits in August - September.


European Russia (southern regions), Caucasus, Crimea, southern and southeastern regions of Moldova and Ukraine, Asia Minor.


In steppe and semidesert zones, on dry subsaline and salted soils, at river banks, lake shores, on stony slopes, screes, ruderal places. Goes up to middle montane zone.

Use and economic value.

Wild relative of cultivated lettuces. Contains rubber.


Kolakovsky AA. 1949. Flora of Abkhazia. V.5. Sukhumi. 354 p. (In Russian).
Mayevsky PF. 2006. Flora of the middle zone of European part of Russia. 10th ed. Moscow. 600 p. (In Russian).
Nikitin VV. 1983. Weed plants of the flora of the USSR. Leningrad: Nauka. 454 p. (In Russian).
Plant resources of the USSR: Flowering plants, their chemical composition and utilization. 1993. Asteraceae (Compositae). St.Petersburg.: Nauka. 352 p. (In Russian).

© I.G.Chukhina

© Photo by L.V.Bagmet

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