Smooth Sow-thistle Sonchus oleraceus 

Class Magnoliopsida: Dicotyledons » Order Asterales » Family Asteraceae: Daisies » Sonchus oleraceus L.

Plant height up to 1.5 m. Flower width 2-2.5 cm.

The dandelion-like flowers are a pale yellow, and paler still on the outside. The grey-green leaves clasp the stem with triangular, pointed basal lobes. When damaged the leaves and stems exude a milky sap.

Possibly confused with Prickly Sow-thistle (Sonchus asper), but the flowers are a deeper yellow, and the leaves a glossy green with rounded basal lobes clasping the stems.

It flowers May to November, and is seen in a variety of habitats including cultivated land, brownfield sites, roadside verges and hedgerows. Abundant and widespread throughout Britain except the far north of Scotland.