Field horsetail – Equisetum arvense

Field horsetail

Equisetum arvense L.
Equisetaceae (Horsetail family)

Life cycle

Perennial, spore-producing plant.

Leaves

Not present.

Stems

Vegetative stems are green and branch in whorls. Stems may have a bottle-brush appearance and should not exceed 2 feet in height. Stems die back to the ground in winter.

Flowers and fruit

Erect, unbranched, white to brown fruiting stalks (stems) bear terminal spore-releasing cones. Flowers are not produced.

Reproduction

Spores and prolific rhizomes.

Similar weeds

Scouringrush (E. hyemale L.)
Differs by having larger evergreen stems with little or no branching. Grows only in wet areas.

Field-horsetail-patch-in-field-300x225
Field horsetail patch in field
Field-horsetail-vegetative-stem-300x200
Field horsetail vegetative stem
Close-up-of-field-horsetail-stem-300x200
Close-up of field horsetail stem
Field-horsetail-fruiting-stalk-300x200
Field horsetail fruiting stalk

For more information visit:

Plant & Pest Diagnostics

Other Documents in this Series

Michigan State University Michigan State University Close Menu button Menu and Search button Open Close