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Plants of fields, roadsides, open disturbed areas.  Flowers June to October.  Not native..

Perennial.  Tap-rooted. Stems vary in number from 1 to several; pubescent or glabrous, and leafy at least toward the base.  The sap is milky white.  Typical height is from 2 to 4+ feet.

Overall inflorescences are open, with many ascending to spreading, mostly leafless branches.  Flower heads are often borne singly or in small, compact clusters along branches or in leaf axils.

Flower heads are ligulate.  All florets are bisexual and fertile.  Corollas are typically pale blue; 5-toothed.

Basal leaves are often present at flowering.  Basal, lower and mid-stem leaves are lanceolate or oblanceolate, often prominently lobed and/or toothed, with bases that clasp stems.

 

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Similar species:  Picris hieracioides, which differs most notably by its florets with yellow corollas.

Note:  The genus Cichorium had until recently been considered isolated within the Composite family.  It's origins had been presumed to be on the Arabian Peninsula.  However, a recent study by Norbert Kilian & Birgit Gemeinholzer (Willdenowia, vol. 37(1), pp. 283-296) identified two more closely related species in the vicinity of the Gulf of Aden (Somalia and Yemen).  The two species, formerly in the genus Prenanthes, were renamed by the authors to Erythroseris amabilis and Erythroseris somalensis.

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