Coltsfoot Tussilago farfara

Scientific Name: Tussilago farfara(Asteraceae). 'Tussilago' = 'cough soother'.  

English Name: Coltsfoot.  

French Name: le Pas d'âne (= 'donkey hoof print'); le Tussilage (= 'cough mixture herb') le Chou de vigne (= 'vine cabbage'); l'Herbe aux pattes (= 'feet weed'); l'Herbe de Saint Quirin ('Saint Quirin's herb'); le Taconnet; le Pied-de-cheval (= 'horse's hoof'); le Pas-de-cheval (= 'horse's hoof print'); le Tussilage pas-d'âne (= 'donkey hoof print cough mixture'); le Fils-avant-le-père (= 'son before father').  

5 Key Characters:
  • single bright yellow daisy flowers.
  • flowers appear before leaves.
  • leaves a rather irregularly shallow toothed heart shape.
  • flower stems scaly, unbranched and leafless.
  • leaves felty underneath.


Habitat:  Clay, waste ground, arable land, cliffs, landslides, scree, banks, river gravels.

Flowering Period:  February-March-April.

Status: Widely distributed, but not all that common in this area. 

Photographed by Loire Valley Nature:
A flower past its best and a leaf. Note the purple scales on the flower stem and the distinctive cranked heart shape of the leaf.

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