WESTERN SALSIFY, Tragopogon dubius Scop. 1, plant with head of mature seed; 2, seed; 3, single flower; 4, plant in flower. Biennial, reproducing by seeds. Taproot fleshy. Stem erect, branched, smooth, 1 to 3 feet (30 to 90 cm) tall, containing milky juice. Leaves grasslike, with a clasping base that encloses the stem, alternate, long, narrow, light green, smooth with smooth margins. Flower heads 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 5 cm) in diameter, solitary at top of stem, composed of bright yellow ray flowers. Seeds about 1/2 inch (1.3 cm) long, narrow, rough, ridged with slender tip on one end, to which is attached a parachutelike appendage. Found in meadows, pastures, waste places, roadsides, and fence rows. The white, sticky juice of this plant is bitter, making the plant unpalatable to livestock. A similar species having purple flowers is found in some areas. Also commonly known as yellow goatsbeard.