Coltsfoot

(Tussilago farfara)

Other Names:
Ass's Foot, British Tobacco, Bullsfoot, Butterbur, Coughwort, Donnhove, Fieldhove, Flower Velure, Foal's-Foot, Foalswort, Horse-Foot, Horsehoof, Hallfoot

Range:

Family:
Asteraceae - Composite Family

Growth Type:
Perennial herbaceous

Height:
Typically grows 8" to 10" in height

Leaves:
The rounded, broadly heart shaped, toothed leaves are born on long stalks. The 10" - 12" across leaves are reminiscent of a colt's hoof. The leaf undersides are covered in a cottony down.

Stem/Trunk:
Reddish scaly stalk

Root:
Rhizome

Flower Season:
Spring to Summer

Flower Appearance:
The flowers are 1" across, and superficially resemble a dandelion. However, the flower stalk is not smooth and hollow like that of a dandelion, but rather has scales along its length. The composite flower has yellow ray-like flowers which surround a sterile yellow disk.

Seed/Fruit:
N/A

Miscellaneous characteristics:
N/A

Habitat:
Along stream and river banks, or any other wet places. It also grows in moist disturbed areas.

Parts Used:
Flowers, Flower Stalks, Young Leaves

Uses:
Wild Food Uses:
The flowers and flower stalks are a good cooked vegetable. The young leaves can be eaten raw in salads, or used as a cooked vegetable similar to spinach. I find the mature older leaves too tough to eat. This plant also has excellent medicinal properties.

The following text is meant for informational purposes only. It is not meant to diagnose or treat any illness or injury. Always consult with a physician or other qualified medical care provider concerning the diagnosis and treatment of any illness or injury.

Medicinal Uses:
Coltsfoot has been used as a cough suppressant and expectorant for ages. The name "Tussilago" itself means "cough suppressant". It has historically been used to treat lung ailments such as asthma and bronchitis. Native Americans smoked the leaves as a remedy for coughs and asthma. It can also be administered from an infusion or a tincture.

Medicinal Actions:
Antirheumatic, Anticatarrhal, Demulcent

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