Plantago lanceolata (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

Plantago lanceolata L.

Protologue: Sp. pl. 1: 113 (1753).

Vernacular names

  • Buckhorn plantain, ribwort (En). Plantain lancéolé, herbe-à-cinq-côtes, bonne femme (Fr)
  • Philippines: lanting-haba (Tagalog)
  • Thailand: phak kaat nam, mo noi (Bangkok), yaa enyuet (northern).


Originally from Europe and western Asia, P. lanceolata is now cosmopolitan, including some tropical highland regions.


The leaves are applied to wounds, skin inflammations and sores. In India, the seeds are used with sugar as a purgative and haemostatic. The plant is also used in traditional medicine in India to treat headache.


A small perennial herb up to 30(-60) cm tall, with a short thick rootstock; leaves in several rosettes, narrowly lanceolate to linear-lanceolate or narrowly elliptical, (2-)10-25(-40) cm × (0.5-)1-3(-5) cm, entire or remotely and shallowly denticulate, subglabrous or appressed pubescent to villous; spike 0.5-5(-8) cm long, very dense, bracts ovate, about 3 mm long; fruit 3-4 mm long, 2-seeded; seeds boat-shaped, about 2 mm long, smooth, brown. P. lanceolata is extremely variable, but much of the variation reflects differences in habitat (e.g. hairy plants in more dry habitats). It is very local in eastern Java (Ijen plateau, in fields and roadsides at about 1500 m altitude) and the Philippines (Luzon, in gardens at about 2200 m altitude).

Selected sources

97, 193, 287, 549, 614, 1012, 1178, 1403, 1565, 1566.


Lilis Pangemanan