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Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed

Pilosella peleteriana

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Asteraceae (Daisy)
Also in this family:
Alpine Blue Sow-thistle, Alpine Cotula, Alpine Fleabane, Alpine Saw-wort, Annual Ragweed, Annual Sunflower, Argentine Fleabane, Autumn Hawkbit, Autumn Oxeye, Beaked Hawksbeard, Beggarticks, Bilbao Fleabane, Black Knapweed, Black-eyed Susan, Blanketflower, Blue Fleabane, Blue Globe-thistle, Bristly Oxtongue, Broad-leaved Cudweed, Broad-leaved Ragwort, Brown Knapweed, Butterbur, Buttonweed, Cabbage Thistle, Canadian Fleabane, Canadian Goldenrod, Carline Thistle, Chalk Knapweed, Chamois Ragwort, Changing Michaelmas Daisy, Chicory, Chinese Mugwort, Chinese Ragwort, Coltsfoot, Common Blue Sow-thistle, Common Cat's-ear, Common Cudweed, Common Daisy, Common Dandelion, Common Fleabane, Common Goldenrod, Common Groundsel, Common Michaelmas Daisy, Common Mugwort, Common Ragwort, Common Wormwood, Coneflower, Confused Michaelmas Daisy, Corn Chamomile, Corn Marigold, Cornflower, Cotton Thistle, Cottonweed, Creeping Thistle, Daisy Bush, Dwarf Cudweed, Dwarf Thistle, Early Goldenrod, Eastern Groundsel, Eastern Leopardsbane, Elecampane, English Hawkweed, Fen Ragwort, Feverfew, Field Fleawort, Field Wormwood, Fox and Cubs, French Tarragon, Gallant Soldier, Garden Lettuce, Giant Butterbur, Glabrous-headed Hawkweed, Glandular Globe-thistle, Glaucous Michaelmas Daisy, Globe Artichoke, Globe-thistle, Goat's Beard, Golden Ragwort, Golden Samphire, Goldilocks Aster, Grass-leaved Goldenrod, Great Lettuce, Greater Burdock, Greater Knapweed, Grey-headed Hawkweed, Guernsey Fleabane, Hairless Blue Sow-thistle, Hairless Leptinella, Hairy Michaelmas Daisy, Harpur Crewe's Leopardsbane, Hawkweed Oxtongue, Heath Cudweed, Heath Groundsel, Hemp Agrimony, Highland Cudweed, Hoary Mugwort, Hoary Ragwort, Hybrid Knapweed, Intermediate Burdock, Irish Fleabane, Jersey Cudweed, Jerusalem Artichoke, Lance-leaved Hawkweed, Lavender-cotton, Leafless Hawksbeard, Least Lettuce, Leopardplant, Leopardsbane, Leptinella, Lesser Burdock, Lesser Hawkbit, Lesser Sunflower, London Bur-marigold, Magellan Ragwort, Marsh Cudweed, Marsh Hawksbeard, Marsh Ragwort, Marsh Sow-thistle, Marsh Thistle, Meadow Thistle, Melancholy Thistle, Mexican Fleabane, Milk Thistle, Mountain Everlasting, Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Musk Thistle, Narrow-leaved Cudweed, Narrow-leaved Hawkweed, Narrow-leaved Michaelmas Daisy, Narrow-leaved Ragwort, New England Hawkweed, New Zealand Holly, Nipplewort, Nodding Bur-marigold, Northern Hawksbeard, Norwegian Mugwort, Oxeye Daisy, Oxford Ragwort, Pearly Everlasting, Perennial Cornflower, Perennial Ragweed, Perennial Sow-thistle, Perennial Sunflower, Pineapple Mayweed, Plantain-leaved Leopardsbane, Ploughman's Spikenard, Plymouth Thistle, Pontic Blue Sow-thistle, Pot Marigold, Prickly Lettuce, Prickly Sow-thistle, Purple Coltsfoot, Rayed Tansy, Red Star Thistle, Red-seeded Dandelion, Red-tipped Cudweed, Robin's Plantain, Roman Chamomile, Rough Cocklebur, Rough Hawkbit, Rough Hawksbeard, Russian Lettuce, Safflower, Salsify, Saw-wort, Scented Mayweed, Scentless Mayweed, Sea Aster, Sea Mayweed, Sea Wormwood, Seaside Daisy, Shaggy Soldier, Shasta Daisy, Shetland Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Shrub Ragwort, Sicilian Chamomile, Silver Ragwort, Slender Mugwort, Slender Thistle, Small Cudweed, Small Fleabane, Smooth Cat's-ear, Smooth Hawksbeard, Smooth Sow-thistle, Sneezeweed, Sneezewort, Spear Thistle, Spotted Cat's-ear, Spotted Hawkweed, Sticky Groundsel, Stinking Chamomile, Stinking Hawksbeard, Tall Fleabane, Tall Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Tansy, Thin-leaved Sunflower, Treasureflower, Trifid Bur-marigold, Tuberous Thistle, Tyneside Leopardplant, Viper's Grass, Wall Lettuce, Welsh Groundsel, Welted Thistle, White African Daisy, White Butterbur, White Buttons, Willdenow's Leopardsbane, Winter Heliotrope, Wood Burdock, Wood Ragwort, Woody Fleabane, Woolly Thistle, Yarrow, Yellow Chamomile, Yellow Fox and Cubs, Yellow Oxeye, Yellow Star Thistle, Yellow Thistle, York Groundsel
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
30 centimetres tall
Gardens, meadows, mountains, riversides, roadsides, waterside.

Yellow, many petals
Solitary, dandelion-like, lemon yellow flowers. The outer florets are reddish in colour beneath. Up to 3cm wide. The bracts are dark-haired. Similar in appearance to Mouse-ear Hawkweed (Pilosela officinarum) but sometimes the flowers of Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed are larger.
An achene with a pappus.
Elliptical, untoothed leaves. White felted beneath. Similar in appearance to Mouse-ear Hawkweed but the leaves are more pointed. Perennial.
Other Names:
Alpine Mouse-ear, Peleter's Hawkweed, Woolly Hawkweed.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Pilosella peleteriana, also known as Peleter's hawkweed, is a perennial herb in the Asteraceae family. It is native to the Alps and Pyrenees mountain ranges in Europe, and is known for its small yellow flowers and hairy leaves. It is commonly used as an ornamental plant in rock gardens and alpine gardens.


Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed, scientifically known as Pilosella peleteriana, is a perennial flowering plant that belongs to the Asteraceae family. This plant is native to Europe and is found growing in alpine meadows and rocky habitats. Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is also commonly known as Woolly Hawkweed or Alpine Mouse-ear.

The name Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is derived from its shaggy and woolly appearance, and its leaves resemble the ears of a mouse. The leaves are covered with dense white hairs, giving it a unique texture and making it easily identifiable. The flowers of this plant are bright yellow and have a diameter of approximately 2 cm. The flowering period is from June to August.

Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is a valuable plant for the ecosystem as it provides nectar and pollen for various insects, including bees and butterflies. The plant is also a host plant for several species of moths.

The medicinal properties of Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed have been recognized since ancient times. It has been used for centuries as a herbal remedy for various ailments, including digestive problems and respiratory issues. The plant contains flavonoids, phenolic acids, and tannins, which give it anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Despite its medicinal benefits, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is considered an invasive species in some parts of North America, including the United States and Canada. It can quickly spread and compete with native plant species, causing significant ecological damage. Efforts are being made to control the spread of this plant, and it is recommended to avoid planting it in gardens or landscapes.

Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed has been used in traditional medicine for various ailments. The plant is believed to have diuretic, antispasmodic, and analgesic properties. It has been used to treat kidney stones, urinary tract infections, rheumatism, and respiratory problems such as coughs and bronchitis.

In modern times, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is used in herbal remedies as a natural treatment for various health issues. It is available in the form of tinctures, teas, and capsules. However, it is essential to consult a healthcare professional before using any herbal remedy, including Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed, to avoid any adverse effects or interactions with other medications.

Apart from its medicinal properties, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed has other uses as well. The plant fibers have been used to make rope and coarse cloth, and the flowers can be used to make yellow dye.

Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed has also been studied for its potential as a bioindicator of heavy metal pollution. The plant has been found to accumulate high levels of heavy metals such as lead and cadmium, making it a useful tool in monitoring soil contamination.

Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is a versatile plant with many uses and benefits. Its unique appearance, ecological value, and medicinal properties make it a valuable addition to any garden or landscape. However, it is important to be aware of its invasive potential and take necessary precautions to prevent its spread. As with any herbal remedy, it is essential to consult a healthcare professional before using Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed for medicinal purposes.

Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed has also been studied for its potential in cancer treatment. Studies have shown that the plant contains bioactive compounds that exhibit anti-tumor activity. These compounds can induce apoptosis (programmed cell death) in cancer cells, inhibit their proliferation, and reduce their migration and invasion.

In addition, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed has been found to have antimicrobial properties, making it useful in treating infections caused by bacteria, fungi, and viruses. The plant contains compounds such as flavonoids and tannins, which have been shown to have antibacterial and antifungal effects.

Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed has also been used in traditional herbal medicine to treat skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and acne. The plant has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can soothe and protect the skin.

Furthermore, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is a valuable plant for beekeepers as it provides a source of nectar and pollen for bees. The flowers of the plant are a rich source of nectar, which bees use to produce honey.

Overall, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed is a versatile plant with various uses and benefits. However, it is crucial to prevent its spread and control its growth in areas where it is considered invasive. With proper management and use, Shaggy Mouse-ear Hawkweed can be a valuable resource for ecological, medicinal, and industrial purposes.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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