by Stephen Mifsud
   7 Aug 2020      ()
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Picris echioides   (Bristly Oxtongue)

Picris echioides   (ASTERACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands at or after year 2000.

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Profile Date Oct-2010 (last update: 12-Jan-2019)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (Oct-2010) Picris echioides retrieved from on 2020-Aug-07

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Picris echioides (L.) Holub
Published in Sp. Pl. 792 (1753)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Helminthotheca echioides
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life ]

Plant Family :

Asteraceae Bercht. & J.Presl (=Compositae) (The Daisy or Sunflower Family)
125 species from the Asteraceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Bristly Oxtongue

Maltese name(s) :

Ilsien il-baqra xewwikija

Status for Malta :

Indigenous. Present on the Maltese islands before man

Frequency :

Very Common     Common     Frequent     Scarce     Rare     Very rare     Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: THEROPHYTE (annuals)
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection [link]:

Not Protected by Law (LN200/2011 or LN311/2006)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :


Colour of Flowers:


Species Description and Distribution

Habitat in Europe:

Data will be available in the next update of this website.

Preferred habitat in Malta:

Data will be available in the next update of this website.

Botanical Description:

Annual or biennial. Stems 30-90 cm, with rigid, often tubercle-based hairs and often with some slender spines. Leaves with numerous unequal, rigid hairs, the larger thickened at the base or tubercle-based, and often with scattered spines; basal 35-250 x 15-100 mm, elliptical to oblanceolate or oblong-oblanceolate, obtuse to acute, sinuate to dentate, narrowed at base into a winged petiole; lower cauline similar to basal but with semiamplexicaul petioles, the upper lanceolate to ovate, sessile, amplexicaul. Capitula numerous. Involucre 12-20 x 10-15 mm; bracts with pectinate-ciliate margins, the outer ovate-cordate, acuminate the inner lanceolate, slightly longer than the outer. Achenes 5-7 mm, transversely muricate, with beak about as long as the body, the inner reddish-brown, more or less straight, the outer whitish, curved.

Chromosome number:


Distributional range:

S. Europe widely naturalized further north, though often inconstant in its appearances.

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):

Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):

Albania, the Azores, the Balaeric Islands, Bulgaria, Corse, Crete, France (incl. Monaco and Channel Islands but excluding Corse), Greece, Spain (incl. Andorra but excl. the Balaerics), Italy (excl. Sicily and Sardignia), ex-Jugoslavia, Portugal, Russia and former USSR, Sardinia, Turkey (European part), Introduced in  Austria and Liechtenstein, Belgium, Britain (excl. Northern Ireland and Channel islands), Czeck Republic and Slovakia, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Hungary, Poland, Romania

Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(Euro+Med Checklist, 2017) - Country codes

Ab(A) AE(G) Ag Al Au(A) dBe(L) BH Bl(I M N) dBr Bu dCa(C F G L P T) Cg Co Cr Ct Cy ?Eg Ga(C F M) Gg Gr dHb(E N) He Ho Hs(G S) Ir It Jo Le Li Lu Ma dMd(D M P) Mk Rf(CS) Sa Si(M S) dSk Sl Sr Sy Tn Tu(A E) Uk(K) [Au aAu(A L) Az(C F G J L M P S T) Be Br nCa(H) aCs Da nGe Hb(E) aHe Hu aIt aLa aLt No nPo Rm]

Images (6 images)
   Picris echioides   -   Image Code: PCREC-0.
   Picris echioides   -   Image Code: PCREC-1.
   Picris echioides   -   Image Code: PCREC-2.
   Picris echioides   -   Image Code: PCREC-3.
   Picris echioides   -   Image Code: PCREC-4.
   Picris echioides   -   Image Code: PCREC-5.

Links & Further info

Google Web

Google Images

Yahoo Web

Yahoo Images




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



The Plant List


Vienna Virt. Hb.





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