Lesser burdock Arctium minus

Also known as: velcro plant

Best time to see: Jul to mid Sep

Key facts

Hefty, sprawling biennial with hooked, clinging seed heads, reputedly serving as the inspiration for velcro

Flowers are thistle-like, surrounded by long shiny yellow bracts that close in cold conditions

Large heart-shaped leaves are longer than they are broad, and have hollow stalks


An infusion of its roots is used, with dandelion, in a once-popular fizzy drink

  • Main photo
  • flower

Photo © Tony Gunton

Photo © Tony Gunton