Sonchus oleraceus L.

Sonchus oleraceus L.




S. sundaicus Blume.

Vernacular Names

English Common sow thistle.
Indonesia Tempuh wiyang, delgiyu (Javanese), camawak (Sundanese).
Philippines Gagatang (Igorot).
Vietnam rau di[ees]p d[aj]i, nh[ux] c[us]c, rau c[us]c s[uwx]a.
French Laitron commun.

Geographical Distributions

The genus Sonchus is of Old World origin and is widely distributed. Sonchusoleraceus are cosmopolitan weeds, occurring from the Arctic zone to the tropics.



S. oleraceus is an annual or biennial, branched herb and up to measure 140 cm tall.

The cauline leaves are variable in outline, with a size of measure about 8-35 cm x 4-17 cm and entire to pinnatipartite. The lobes are entire, dentate or spiny. There are about 80-230 flowers per head. The involucral bracts are about 30. The measuring of 6 mm petal tube is as long as the ligule.

The achene (fruit) is rough, oblanceolate in shape, with a size of measure about 2.5-3.75 mm x 0.75-1 mm and with 2-4 main ribs on each side. The pappus is about two times as long as the achene and it is subpersistent.


Ecology / Cultivation

The wide distribution of S. oleraceus is proof of its great ecological adaptability.Gardens and cultivated terrains in humid to subhumid areas is its normal habitat. S. asper prefers a slightly cooler and more humid environment than S. oleraceus. It has no specific edaphic requirements. S. oleraceus usually flower and fruit year-round.

Line Drawing / Photograph



    1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 8: Vegetables.