Chicory

Weeds

succory, blue sailors, blue daisy, coffee-weed, bunk

Cichorium intybus


Chicory is probably the most common weed of Michigan roadsides. In the late summer its bright blue flowers are easily identifiable at 50 mph. Chicory is a simple (unbranched) perennial with a jagged fleshy taproot. The coarsely-toothed basal leaves are 6-8" long and form a rosette. The stems are erect and sparsely leaved.

Chicory can survive dry, infertile conditions. Mowing of the plant will cause the stems to dry out leaving a very hard twiggy stump that is quite unfriendly to bare feet.

  • Crops Affected: Turfgrass

    Management

    Chicory is very well adapted to the harsh, dry and infertile conditions found on roadsides, waste areas and out-of-play natural areas on golf courses. It is not uncommon to see green healthy plants and splendid flower production even after a summer of drought. Chicory is less often a weed of medium-to-high maintenance turf. Consistent mowing and improved fertility are very effective at reducing the competitiveness of chicory in turf area.

    Similar Species

    The simple (unbranched) rosette of chicory and dandelion can be very hard to distinguish at a glance. The toothed lobes of dandelion tend to by symetrical and point back toward the base of the rosette. The lobes on chicory are usually less symetrical and can point back, straight-out or forward. Chicory often has a row of spines on the underside of the leaf along the midrib that is lacking on dandelion. Once mature, chicory is easily distinguished by its branched stems with its blue-to-purple flowers.