E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Arctium minus Bernh.
common burdock (lesser burdock)
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Bryan Kelly-McArthur  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #68901)

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Distribution of Arctium minus
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Species Information

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Large, coarse, biennial herb; stems erect, leafy, 0.5-1.5 m tall.
Basal leaves large, up to 60 cm long and 40 cm wide, egg- to heart-shaped, short-stalked or unstalked (the lower stalks hollow), green and nearly glabrous above, thinly white-woolly beneath; stem leaves similar, alternate, progressively reduced upwards.
Heads numerous in a relatively scattered, elongate inflorescence; involucres globose, burlike, 1.5-2.5, rarely 3.5 cm wide, nearly unstalked or on short stalks; involucral bracts in several series, long, narrow, angled, ascending with inwardly hooked tips; ray flowers lacking; disk flowers deep pink to purple, tubular.
Achenes glabrous, oblong, 3-angled, several-ribbed; pappus of numerous short bristles.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Dry roadsides, disturbed areas and pastures in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; frequent in coastal, WC and S BC; introduced from Eurasia. Description

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Arctium minus

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 35 554 930
Slope Gradient (%) 0 6 40
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
35 185 290
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
5 5 7
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BG(19), CWH(7), IDF(9), PP(1)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Lappa minor Hill

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References