Cicerbita alpina

Alpine Milchlattich ( Cicerbita alpina)

The Alpine - Milchlattich ( Cicerbita alpina ) is a species of plant in the sunflower family ( Asteraceae).


Vegetative characteristics

When Alpine Milchlattich is a perennial herbaceous plant, reaching the heights of growth of mostly 60 to 140 (rarely up to 240 ) cm. The strong, usually unbranched stems above is densely glandular bristly brownish-red and violet crowded.

The lower leaves are petiolate The leaves are lyre-shaped fiederteilig with a triangular -shaped end portion to spit, which is often achieved at the lower leaves sizes of about 10 cm, and three pair of side lobes. The upper leaves are just sitting and amplexicaul in part, with pointed lobes. The leaves in the upper part of the plant are hairy like the stem there clearly glandular, the lower and middle part against bare.

Generative features

The flowering period extends from July to September. The grapey - Rispige total inflorescence is usually much longer than it is wide and contains numerous basket- shaped part inflorescences. The Blütenstandsschäfte are brown hairy. The bracts are covered with long glandular hairs. The ray florets are blue purple and have a diameter of about 2 cm.


The Alpine - Milchlattich is a growing in groups Hemikryptophyt. Pollination is by bumblebees, hoverflies and beetles. Self-pollination when the stylus Zurückkrümmen branches is not possible. The flower heads are closed at night and in the rain.

As the " cheaters" are occasionally tons of greenish iridescent beetles that can eat the leaves down to the leaf veins bare.


The Alpine - Milchlattich is quite common in the Alps, especially at altitudes between 1,000 and 2,000 meters. In the higher mountain ranges of Europe, you can find him distracted.

The Alpine - Milchlattich thrives in nutrient- rich soils that develop on limestone and silicate rock. It grows mainly in subalpine tall herb fringe communities and in mountain forests.


The Alpine - Milchlattich is very popular with mountain peasants for allegedly increases the milk yield of cows. Many common names such as milk herb, milk thistle, Schmettenwurz ( Schmetten = cream ), Chalberchernechrut refer to it. Is collected in some areas of Western Switzerland as Tzougras specifically for animal feed. The lobes eat the bitter-tasting stalks boiled in reindeer milk as a vegetable.