Extension Logo
Extension Logo
University of Minnesota Extension
https://extension.umn.edu

Butter and eggs

Quick facts

Butter and eggs is an invasive species.

  • Butter and eggs is adaptable to various site conditions.

  • It can be found growing in gravelly to sandy soil along roadsides, railroad tracks, dry fields, pastures or croplands.

  • It spreads vegetatively and competes well against native plants in gravel or sandy soil.

Butter and eggs should be reported. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources provides detailed recommendations for reporting invasive species.

single butter and eggs flower in the grass

How to identify butter and eggs

  • Perennial herbaceous plant, one to three and a half feet high.
  • Also known as yellow toadflax, butter & eggs emerges in clumps from a spreading root system.
  • The flowers are similar to Dalmatian toadflax.

Stem

  • Multiple vertical, smooth stems growing from spreading rootstalks; rarely branched.

Leaves

  • Alternate, smooth, a half inch to two inches long and narrow.
  • The leaves are sometimes sparsely covered in long hairs.
  • Leaves are tightly packed along the stem, appearing opposite but are in fact alternate.

Flowers

  • Bright yellow/white snapdragon-like flowers, a half inch to one and a third inches with a long spur.
  • The flowers are arranged in an elongated cluster of 15–20 flowers along each stem.
  • Blooms mid-May until late September.

Seeds

  • Capsules are a fourth to half inch long.
  • They contain small, flat, dark seeds with papery wings that are easily dispersed by wind and water.
  • They can survive in the soil for up to 8 years.

Roots

  • Root buds form on the taproot and lateral roots.
  • Spread vegetatively.
  • The root fragments are as small as a half inch and are capable of producing a new plant.
group of butter and eggs growing together
butter & eggs
up close photo of butter and eggs flower
Butter and eggs

 

Angela Gupta, Extension educator; Amy Rager, Extension educator; Megan M. Weber, Extension educator

Reviewed in 2019

Share this page:

© 2019 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.