Senecio vulgaris L.

Common Groundsel

Sp. Pl. 867 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Ascending to erect, somewhat fleshy, weakly pubescent annual to c. 50 cm high. Leaves sessile, c. oblong, 3–8 cm long, 6–20 mm wide, pinnatifid with lobes cleft c. halfway to midrib, and irregularly serrate; lower leaves tapered toward base, upper leaves with broad, stem-clasping bases; surfaces with scattered, long hairs or rarely quite glabrous. Inflorescences usually with c. 6–20 capitula in congested corymbs, elongating in fruit; capitula non-radiate; involucre campanulate or broadly cylindric, 5–7 mm long, glabrous or with very few hairs at base; bracts 18–23, black-tipped, often recurved; bracteoles conspicuous, in several series, black; florets 40–70, all bisexual. Cypselas cylindric to bluntly fusiform, c. 2 mm long, pale brown, shortly appressed-pubescent in rows; pappus of slender hairs c. 4 mm long, deciduous. Flowers Jul.–Feb.

*CVU, *EGL, *GipP, *Gold, *HSF, *OtP, *OtR, *Strz, *VVP, *WaP. Naturalized all States except NT, and almost globally in cool-temperate regions. Native to Europe. In Victoria apparently confined to the vicinity of a few major settlements in the south (e.g. Portland, Colac, Geelong, Melbourne, Dandenong Ranges, Bairnsdale), and not common beyond cultivated ground.

Source: Walsh, N.G. (1999). Senecio. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Daniel Ohlsen, 2017-05-31
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Asteranae
order Asterales
family Asteraceae
genus Senecio
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Senecio vulgaris in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Senecio vulgaris in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present introduced
Warrnambool Plain present naturalised
Goldfields present naturalised
Central Victorian Uplands present naturalised
East Gippsland Lowlands present naturalised
Highlands-Southern Fall present naturalised
Otway Ranges present introduced
Strzelecki Ranges present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
Northern Territory
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory