Broadleaf Plantain

    Plantago major

    Broadleaf Plantain

    Broadleaf plantain (John Cardina, The Ohio State University,

    Broadleaf Plantain

    Broadleaf plantain growth habit (The Ohio State University,



    • low-growing, densely matted plant with dark green egg-shaped leaves that radiate away from a central point
    • large leaves (3 – 7 inches long and 1 – 2 inches wide) have prominent veins and long stalks
    • flower stalks are long (4 – 15 inches) and grow upright; the flower/seed head portions of the stalks have a tail-like appearance
    • as flower/seed stalks mature, their color turns from greenish yellow to brown


    • commonly grows in lawn areas but may also invade adjacent planting beds

    Life Cycle

    • perennial that spreads by seed; seedlings germinate when soil temperatures reach 50°F and continue through the growing season
    • flowers are produced 8 to 15 weeks after germination and plants continue to flower and produce seed from late spring to early fall

    IPM Recommendations

    • Hand-pull plants in planting beds prior to seed maturation.
    • Apply a mulch layer 3 inches deep on planting beds to reduce seed germination.
    • Apply repeat applications of an appropriate broadleaf herbicide (2,4-D is most effective on mature plants) and over-seed areas with exposed soil.
    • Spot treat foliage with an appropriate post-emergent herbicide.