Perennials, 10-60 cm; taproots vertical, thick, fibrous, caudices woody. Stems (1-15) erect, usually branched (2-3 times at midstem and distally, sparsely bracteate or naked), glabrous or coarsely hirsute proximally. Leaves all basal; blades oblanceolate, lyrate to slightly runcinate, 50--350 × 5-30 mm, margins coarsely dentate to pinnatifid, faces ± hirsute (hairs coarse, spreading). Heads usually 2-7 in loose arrays, sometimes borne singly. Involucres cylindric or campanulate, 10-25 × 10-20 mm. Phyllaries 20-30, narrowly lanceolate, 3-20 mm, unequal, margins scarious, green to darkened, faces glabrous or sparsely hirsute medially. Florets 10-15 mm, surpassing phyllaries at flowering; corollas bright yellow or grayish green. Cypselae monomorphic, all beaked, beaks 3-5 mm; bodies golden brown, fusiform, 6-10 mm, ribs 10-12, muricate; pappi of whitish bristles in 2 series, outer barbellate, shorter than plumose inner, longest 10-12 mm. 2n = 8.
Hypochaeris radicata is recognized by the coarse, perennial habit, stout roots, coarsely hirsute leaves and phyllaries, yellow corollas, and monomorphic, beaked cypselae. It is weedy and invasive in some areas.
Perennial from a caudex, fibrous-rooted, or more often several of the roots enlarged; stem 1.5-6 dm, branched above or in small plants simple, naked or only sparsely and minutely bracteate, often spreading-hispid below; basal lvs hispid, oblanceolate, toothed or pinnatifid, 3-35 נ0.5-7 cm; heads usually several, terminating the branches, rather showy, the ligules surpassing the invol and ca 4 times as long as wide; invol 10-15 mm at anthesis, to ca 25 mm in fr, its bracts imbricate, glabrous or hispid; body of the achenes mostly 4-7 mm, multinerved, the nerves muricate; achenes all with a slender beak from a little shorter to more often much longer than the body, or the outer ones only short-beaked; some of the outer pappus-bristles often shorter than the inner and merely barbellate; 2n=8. Roadsides, pastures, fields, and waste places; native of Eurasia, now widely established in the U.S. and s. Can. May-Sept.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.