Scientific Name: Lamium amplexicaule

Common Name: henbit deadnettle

Other Common Names: henbit

Synonyms: Lamium amplexicaule var. album

Habit: Low growing winter weed with erect flowering stems that usually grow to about 10 to 25 cm tall (may reach 15 inches or 38cm). Stems are square and four-sided. Seedlings emerge in fall and early spring. Flower production may start in the fall but predominately occurs in spring and early summer. Plants completely die during hot summer months.

Leaves: The oppositely arranged leaves are round or wider than long with numerous rounded teeth. Leaves lack stalks (petioles) and tend to project at right angles to the stem. The entire plant is usually sparsely hairy.

Identifying Characteristics: Henbit has square stems and opposite leaves with rounded teeth. Plants produce characteristic mint-like flowers that are pink to purple; however, it does not have the characteristic smell like other members of the mint family. It can be confused with purple hen bit, but Henbit deadnettle has smaller leaves that are more lobed.

Flower Seed Head: Flowers are pink to purple and arise from leaf axils near the tip of erect stems. Flower parts are united into a two lipped tube. The inside of the tube has purple splotches.

Seed Fruit: Seeds are brown to light brown with lighter speckles. Seeds are about 2 mm long and have two angular flat sides and a rounded back.

Where Found: A common weed of lawns and other turfgrass areas, plants are often noticed after flower production starts in the spring. Plants are also common in home gardens, nursery crops and other agricultural crops.

  • Life cycle: winter annual

  • Milky sap: Not Present

  • Plant type: Herb

  • Thorns: Not Present

  • Plant family: Lamiaceae

  • Leaf arrangement: opposite

  • Leaf shape: oval; round; heart

  • Ochrea: Not Present

  • Leaf margin: lobed

  • Stem hairs: has hairs

  • Flower color: purple

  • Growth habit: upright and nonwoody

  • Stem: square or multi-edged

  • Leaf structure: simple

  • Leaf hairs: has hairs

  • Flower symmetry: bilateral symetry

  • Flower diameter: pencil; dime

  • Root structure: fibrous

  • Leaf stalk: shorter than leaf