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Meadow hawkweed (Hieracium caespitosum)

Meadow hawkweed Synonyms: Hieracium pratense

Common Names: Field hawkweed, yellow hawkweed, yellow kingdevil

Description: Introduced to North America as an ornamental in the 1800s.

Habit: Creeping perennial with shallow, fibrous roots and long rhizomes.

Leaves: Mostly basal, 2-10 in. long, 1/2 to 1 1/4 in. wide, oblong lance to elliptic, blunt or pointed at the tip, smooth or sparsely toothed along the edges. Surface is dull, sparsely covered in fine hairs.

Stems: Flowering stems are densely hairy with finer hairs at the base, becoming stiff, glandular hairy towards the flower cluster. Short, stout rhizomes and long stolons may be present.

Flowers: 5-25 yellow dandelion-like flowers form a tight flattened cluster at the tip of a long, mostly naked stem. Individual flowers are about 3/4 inch across, with dense, dark glandular hairs on the bracts and short flower stalks.

Fruit and seeds: Florets are replaced by narrowly oblongoid achenes about 1.5-2 mm. in length; the truncate upper tips of these achenes have small tufts of white hair.

Habitat: Native to Europe. Found along roadsides, in fields, clearings, disturbed sites; dry open forests, meadows, banks.

Reproduction: Root system consists of a taproot with either rhizomes or stolons. Occasionally, clonal offsets develop to form small colonies of plants. Also reseeds itself.

Similar species: Difficult to distinguish from Tall hawkweed (Hieracium piloselloides).

Monitoring and rapid response: Hand-pulling can be used on small infestations if entire root system is removed. Mowing does not seem effective. Herbicides may control hawkweed, though not in all cases. Applications must be made early in the growing season when plants are at the rosette stage.

Credits: The information provided in this factsheet was gathered from Minnesota Wildflowers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service.

Individual species images that appear with a number in a black box are courtesy of the network ( Individual photo author credits may not be included due to the small display size of the images and subsequent difficulty of reading the provided text. All other images appear courtesy of Google (

Common Name:

Meadow hawkweed

Scientific Name:

Hieracium caespitosum







USDA Symbol: