1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Colt's-foot

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COLT’S-FOOT, the popular name of a small herb, Tussilago Farfara, a member of the natural order Compositae, which is common in Britain in damp, heavy soils. It has a stout branching underground stem, which sends up in March and April scapes about 6 in. high, each bearing a head of bright yellow flowers, the male in the centre surrounded by a much larger number of female. The flowers are succeeded by the fruits, which bear a soft snow-white woolly pappus. The leaves, which appear later, are broadly cordate with an angular or lobed outline, and are covered on the under-face with a dense white felt. The botanical name, Tussilago, recalls its use as a medicine for cough (tussis). The leaves are smoked in cases of asthma.