Hound's-tongue - Cynoglossum officinale


A medium height, greyish, softly hairy plant with quite broad, lanceolate to oblong, untoothed leaves, the lower short stalked, the upper clasping the stem. Flowers dull purple, 5 to 6 mm, funnel shaped.

Identification difficulty
ID checklist (your specimen should have all of these features)

Large plant; leaves grey-green, hairy; flowers reddish-purple, nutlets spiny

Recording advice

Photograph of whole plant in habitat (RPR)


Dry grassy habitats, gravelly or disturbed ground, often found near to the coast.

When to see it

Flowers May to August.

Life History


UK Status

Widespread but infrequent in England and Wales.

VC55 Status

Scarce in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the Flora of Leicestershire (Primavesi and Evans 1988) it was found in 3 of the 617 tetrads, and in the Flora of Rutland (Messenger 1971) in 9 tetrads.

In the current checklist (Jeeves 2011) is is listed as Native; scarce.

It is listed on the current VC55 Rare Plant Register (Hall and Woodward 2022) as Locally Scarce (i.e. present in 4-10 sites)


Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map

Species profile

Common names
Hound's-tongue, Common Houndstongue
Species group:
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
02/07/2015 (Nicholls, David)
Last record:
15/06/2022 (Bell, Melinda)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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