Lactuca graminifolia

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Lactuca graminifolia
Lact gram.jpg
Photo by Wayne Matchett,
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae ⁄ Compositae
Genus: Lactuca
Species: L. graminifolia
Binomial name
Lactuca graminifolia
LACT GRAM dist.jpg
Natural range of Lactuca graminifolia from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Common name: grassleaf lettuce, coastal plain lettuce[1]

Taxonomic notes

Synonym: none[1]

Varieties: Lactuca graminifolia Michaux var. graminifolia[1]


A description of Lactuca graminifolia is provided in The Flora of North America. This species is abundant where found. [2]


This plant can be found from North Carolina to Florida, and west to central Louisiana. There are disjunct populations in southern New Jersey.[1]



This species is found in pine flatwoods, evergreen scrub oak sand ridges, fallow fields, bordering swamps, and longleaf pine-wiregrass pinelands. [2] Also found in disturbed areas, Lactuca graminifolia has also been observed to grow along roadsides, near campgrounds, around parking compounds, and within moist, sphagnum-filled ditches. [2] It grows in dry, loamy sands as well as moist, grassy areas in open light conditions. [2] Associated species includes Longleaf pine, wiregrass, Phlox floridana, Stillingia sylvatica, Asimina longifolia var. spathulata, Lactuca graminifolia, Stylosanthes biflora, Erigeron strigosa, Baptisia lanceolata, Hedyotis crassifolia, Pterocaulon undulatum, Asclepias humistrata, and Quercus hemisphaerica. [2]


L. graminifolia has been observed flowering from March through June, September, and October.[2][3] It has also been observed fruiting from May through June and in October. [2]

Fire ecology

It is found in patches of degraded longleaf pine sandhill after burn and control (no burn) treatments.[4]


Lactuca graminifolia has been observed at the Archbold Biological Station to host sweat bees such as Halictus poeyi (family Halictidae) and leafcutting bees such as Dianthidium floridiense (family Megachilidae).[5] Additionally, L. graminifolia has been observed to host the aphid Uroleucon sp. (family Aphididae).[6]

Conservation, cultivation, and restoration

Cultural use

Similar to cultivated lettuce, wild lettuce species can be used as salad greens.[7]

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Weakley, A.S. 2020. Flora of the Southeastern United States. Edition of 20 October 2020. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Florida State University Robert K. Godfrey Herbarium database. URL: Last accessed: June 2014. Collectors: Loran C. Anderson, Lisa Keppner, Ed Keppner, Paul L. Redfearn, Jr., Robert K. Godfrey, Grady W. Reinert, Richard S. Mitchell, Gwynn W. Ramsey, H.L. Stripling, James R. Burkhalter, S.W. Leonard, L. Baltzell, D.B. Ward, D. Burch, S.G. Shelter, Kevin Oakes, R. Komarek, R.A. Norris, John B. Nelson, Travis MacClendon, and Karen MacClendon. States and Counties: Florida: Bay, CalhounColumbia, Dixie, Escambia, Franklin, Gadsden, Hernando, Jackson, Jefferson , Lake, Liberty, Leon, Levy, Madison, Marion, Okaloosa, Orange, Pasco, Polk, Taylor, and Wakulla. Georgia: Grady and Thomas.
  3. Nelson, G. PanFlora: Plant data for the eastern United States with emphasis on the Southeastern Coastal Plains, Florida, and the Florida Panhandle. Accessed: 12 DEC 2016
  4. Heuberger, K. A. and F. E. Putz (2003). "Fire in the suburbs: ecological impacts of prescribed fire in small remnants of longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) sandhill." Restoration Ecology 11: 72-81.
  5. Deyrup, M.A. and N.D. 2015. Database of observations of Hymenoptera visitations to flowers of plants on Archbold Biological Station, Florida, USA.
  6. [1]
  7. Fernald, et al. 1958. Edible Plants of Eastern North America. Harper and Row Publishers, New York.