Family: Plantaginaceae – Plantain Family
Plantago patagonica is the only species from this family represented at Arches National Park.
Annual herbs from taproots; dicots with parallel veined leaves; 2” to 1' (5 to 30 cm) tall
Leaves: all basal or nearly so; simple; woolly; linear; entire or lobed; 0.4” to 8” (1 to 20 cm) long, 0.08” to 0.6” (2 to 15 mm) wide
Flowers: 4 inconspicuous lobed united tiny white petals; 4 united tubular sepals; 4 stamens; 1 pistil; 1 style; 2 carpels; petals 0.08” (2 mm) long
Pollinators: other Plantago species are pollinated by wind
Blooms in Arches National Park: April, May, June, July
Habitat in Arches National Park: desert shrub and pinyon-juniper communities
Location seen: Windows, Delicate Arch trail, Salt Valley
Other: The genus name, “Plantago”, is from the Latin “planta” meaning “sole of the foot” and refers to the broad foot-shaped leaves of some species. The species name, “patagonica”, means “of Patagonia ” and refers to the plant's distribution.
Seeds from another species of Plantago are used as a laxative.