Scientific Name: Cichorium intybus

Common Name: chicory

Other Common Names: blue sailors, coffeeweed, succory

Synonyms: Cichorium intybus var. foliosum, Cichorium intybus L. var. sativum

Habit: Germination begins late spring to early summer; however, the plant has very rapid growth and begins flowering as early as June and as late as September.

Leaves: Early on, a basal rosette forms but is absent later on during flowering. Leaves are alternate, rough haired and larger at the bottom. Upper leaves are 3-7 cm long, stalkless, and clasp the stem. Basal leaves can be 10 to 20 cm long and 2 to 12 cm wide. Margins are irregularly toothed and lobed. Rosette leaves are similar to dandelion but they are hairy and rough.

Identifying Characteristics: It is a tall plant with purple flowers, milky sap and rought hairs on the leaves and stems.

Flower Seed Head: Flowers appear in clusters of 2-5 blooms at the leaf axils or stem nodes. They are small and green to white on long slender stalks.

Seed Fruit: Fruit are small egg-shaped capsules with three chambers. The seeds harbored in those chambers are very small, dark brown, flattened, and kidney-shaped.

Where Found: It infests road sides, disturbed areas, railroads, and some agronomic and forage fields throughout the US and in parts of Canada.

  • Life cycle: perennial

  • Milky sap: Present

  • Plant type: Herb

  • Thorns: Not Present

  • Plant family: Asteraceae

  • Leaf arrangement: rosette; alternate

  • Leaf shape: lance; triangle

  • Ochrea: Not Present

  • Leaf margin: lobed

  • Stem hairs: has hairs

  • Flower color: blue

  • Growth habit: upright and nonwoody

  • Stem: round or oval

  • Leaf structure: simple

  • Leaf hairs: has hairs

  • Flower symmetry: radial symmetery

  • Flower diameter: half dollar; larger; quarter

  • Root structure: fibrous; taproot

  • Leaf stalk: none