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Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara)
French name: tussilage
General: In the areas where it is found, coltsfoot is usually the first small herb to flower in spring.
Leaves & Twigs: This plant has solid, hairy stems that give rise to the flowers. The distinctive, dark green, hoof-shaped leaves are hairy, which helps to distinguish coltsfoot from similar-looking plants.
Flowers & Fruit: The shiny yellow flowers resemble small dandelions, and open in the sun. The plant’s composite flower heads contain two kinds of flowers: little tube-like ones in the middle and strap-shaped ones on the outside.
Habitat: This herb is often found growing along sunny sidewalks and roadsides, and in rocky fields.
Sampling: Select a typical patch of plants, if the plants are very abundant, mark off a 1-metre-square section to observe.