Feb. 16, 2021

rattlesnakeweed, Hieracium venosum

Rattlesnake? 'Venosum' doesn't mean venom, rather it is a reference to veins. It is said this plant gets its name because it lives in the same areas as rattlesnakes. At least here in Michigan that's not true. Our rattlesnakes are more likely to hang out with crawdads, and this hawkweed likes dryer areas. I suspect the name does have more to do with the distinctively veined leaves. The veins are dark, often purplish. But I admit they don't look like snakes. This native hawkweed likes dry sandy areas, often with pine or oak, in AL, CT, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, MA, ME(E), MI, MN, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV, BC, and ON. This is apparently a west coast introduction, and is listed as noxious in WA. Lenawee Co MI, 5/20/12. Aster family, Asteraceae.