A. R. (Arthur Reginald) Horwood.

A new British flora : British wild flowers in their natural haunts (Volume 3) online

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second Latin name refers to its habitat in groves or woods.

The only English name is Yellow Pimpernel.



203. Lysiuiachia ncnionitii, L. Stem prostrate, spreading, leaves
ovate-acute, opposite, flowers yellow, small, axillary, on i -flowered
peduncles, filaments free, glabrous.

Small Periwinkle (Vinca minor, L.)

The blue flowers of this choice plant adorn the countryside in the
North Temperate Zone in Europe, South of Denmark generally, but
not in Greece, and W. Asia. In Great Britain it is found in the
Peninsula, Channel, Thames, and Anglia provinces, except in Hunts;
Northants, in the Severn province; in S. Wales, only in Glamorgan,
Pembroke, Carmarthen, Anglesea; in the Trent province, in S. Lines
or Derby; throughout the Mersey, Humber, and Tyne provinces; in
Cumberland and the Isle of Man; in the W. Lowlands, not in Wig-
town; in the E. Lowlands, only in Berwick, Edinburgh, Linlithgow;
in the E. Highlands, in Perth, Forfar, S. Aberdeen, Banff, Elgin, and
E. Sutherland.

It is often only naturalized. Watson regards it as a denizen, and
says he has not seen it in a certainly native state, though quasi-wild in
many counties.

The Small Periwinkle, suspected as it is of running wild from
gardens, &c., is found in all parts of the country in woodlands, espe-
cially small plantations of no considerable antiquity, where it grows
amongst herbage and trees in tangled profusion, but certainly it
usually suggests that originally it was planted.

The trailing habit of this pretty wild flower causes it to be over-
looked. The stems are lying down, rooting, simple, smooth. The
leaves are opposite, stalked, like Privet, oval, acute, with a smooth

The flowers are a beautiful blue colour, at length falling, borne
on erect flower-stalks, with a white eye, inclined to be double. The
smooth calyx is only about a third as long as the corolla and does
not fall. The corolla is cup-like with the tube spreading above,
below cylindrical.

The plant is 4 ft. in length when luxuriant. It is in flower
between March and September. It is an evergreen trailer, propa-
gated by seed.

Sprengel supposed it was pollinated by 77irips transferring pollen
from the anthers to the stigma by creeping in and out, but it was
observed by Darwin that an insect inserting a long thin proboscis


would become smeared with a sticky substance to which pollen would
adhere, and this would be transferred in the next flower to the stig-
matic disk. The flowers are conspicuous. There is abundant honey,
which attracts numerous insects when it is fine. The tube of the
corolla is 1 1 mm. long, but enlarged so that insects can insert their
heads as far as the anther-hairs. The two yellow nectaries at the
base of the ovary are 8 mm. below, and protected from rain by the
hairs at the entrance.

Photo. B. Hanley

SMALL PERIWINKLE (Vinca minor, L.)

The stamens are bent, attached half-way up the tube. The anthers
project above the stigma, which is conical, enlarged above with a flat
plate at the top, sticky along the rim, hairy above. The pollen falls
above the latter. Insects sipping the honey carry off the pollen to
fresh stigmas.

The Lesser Periwinkle is visited by Bombus, Anthophora, Osinia,
Bombylius discolor, Thysanoptera, Thrips.

The fruit is a follicle, which is rare. It is adapted for dispersal of
the seeds by the wind, the seeds being compressed, winged, and pro-
vided with hairs.

This plant is a humus-loving plant, growing in a humus soil, in
or near woods.

Two moths, Daphnia nerii (Oleander Hawk-moth), Clouded
Bordered Brindle ( Triphana janthina), feed upon it.


Vinca is the Pervinca of Pliny, and Periwinkle comes from this,
the second Latin name denoting that it is smaller than the other

The plant is called Blue Buttons, Dicky Dilver, Ground Ivy, Peri-
winkle, Sen Green. It was supposed to inspire love, and called Death's
flower, being scattered over the graves of children in Italy and
Tuscany. It was said to signify early recollections or pleasures of
memory. Rousseau was struck with their appearance in a hedge
when going to Charmattes, and thirty years afterwards, in company
with Mme De Stae'l he saw the flower, and it reminded him of the
occasion again. It is much cultivated in gardens and shrubberies.


208. Vinca minor, L. Stem procumbent, wiry, with erect leafy
shoots, leaves lanceolate, margins smooth, flowers blue, solitary.

Lungwort (Pulmonaria officinalis, L.)

Not being native in this country, Lungwort is not found in any
early deposits. It is a member of the Northern Temperate Flora of
Europe. It is not an indigenous plant, and is regarded by Watson as
an introduction in the thirty odd counties in which it occurs in S. Scot-
land and England.

Everywhere it is rare and merely naturalized, having escaped from
cultivation in the garden, and it is usually found in copses and similar
woodland habitats close to houses, by the owners of which, in the
first instance, it has been dispersed by planting with other plants,
such as Periwinkle, Spurge Laurel, and some others equally under

The name Lungwort, translated from the first Latin name, refers
to a character of the leaves, which have a spotted appearance. It is
an erect, hairy, slender-stemmed plant with alternate leaves, the radical-
leaves being egg-shaped or heart-shaped, rough, the stem-leaves stalk-
less and egg-shaped. The leaves are spotted with pale-green patches
about a quarter of an inch across.

The flowers are pale purple or pink, and of two forms, long- and
short-styled, the short-styled form having larger flowers. The flower-
stalks are simple and the flowers in terminal forked cymes. The calyx
is as long as the straight tube of the corolla. The corolla, first pink
(like others), turns blue later, hence the flowers present a variegated

The stem is i foot high. The Lungwort flowers in May and June.


<z. Vertical section of short-
stylied flower, with fuonel-
shaped corona, and epipetal-
ous stamens near the throat,
and 3 of tlje segments of
the corolla, srnaJl ovary. ^,
Long- styled form with long
style, and stamjeps half-way-
down the corolla.; , Flower-
Ing stem, with alternate- hairy
sessile leaves, knd terminal
cyme with gamosepalous
calyx and versicolorous co-
rollas, and flowers in differem
stages, open and closed.

section of I

shaped flower, short style and
ovaries below, epipetalous
included anthers, b, Flower-
ing stem with
liguJate hairy
tomous inflo
scor^ioid cy
in various


Inflorescence a terminal
raceme, with flowers- (bell-
shap^d), in /axils of bracts,
drooping, the inside with
hone : guideB or spqts^with
white rin- and dark centres,
shtJwiiig the 5-partite
.-K.'d ovary or
nle exposed, with long
style and bifid stigma, after
corolla lifts fallen, when the
ovules are matuie,

ence with
', and flowers
es, with flat

No. 4. Marjoram
jitnunt vutgart; 1 .
i. F'ower. enlarged, show-

'i!- more or less beij-sJi aped
gv>ir,osep?.U>us calyx, and the
a-Jipjpc-4 labiate; corolla, \vitli
exseited stamens and style.
<*, Flowering stem, showing
stfem, ,piefcussa,te

ired leaves; opposite, alter- .. ,.

Ie/ pairs at right angles,
.i.u' corymbose cyme, with - "
bracts and flowers in Carious
stajres^-^Jl^- not

. I

No. 5. ^'afiiySletony

kys officinal is, L.)

a, Vertical i,ec't,iWT of labiate
flowed- with cylindrto^tjube,
iatera|' l^fees,
cjjt .in half, also > jioVjVr
2 ;<li^rc CT>ipetalbos-'st^ens
in tte^ throavH K' Persistent
bell-Seabed calyx enclosing
iu:t ; 'j!s, with long persistent
siyle and bifid stigma, c,
Flowering stem, with square



helmet-like upper lip, and
spotted l-iteral- ami -lower,
lip, and hjojfc ^>f hairs and 4

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i. Lungwort (Pnlmonaria officinalis, L. ) 2. Wood Forget-me-not (Myosotis sylratica, Hofifm.). 3. l-'oxglove

( Digitalis purpurea, L. ). 4. Marjoram (Origanum vulgare, L.). 5- Wood Betony (Stac/iys offifinalis, Trev.).

6. Yellow Archangel (Lain him Galtobdolon, Crantz).



The Lungwort is perennial, increased by division of the root, and is
worthy of inclusion in our garden borders.

The plant is dimorphic. The flowers are rich in honey, which is
secreted by the white base of the ovary in the lower part of the corolla-
tube, protected by hairs inside the corolla, and much visited by insects.
A ring of hairs in the wider part of the tube shelters the honey from
rain and flies. The anthers stand at the mouth of the tube (10-12 mm.
long) in the short-styled form, and the long stigma stands half-way up
the tube, on a style 5-6 mm. long. In the long-styled forms the style

Photo. Dr. Somerville Hastings

LUNGWORT (Pulmonaria officinalis, L.)

is 10 mm. long, and the anther-stalks are very short, 5 mm. from the
base of the flower.

The corolla has an enlarged mouth, so that a proboscis of a bee
8 mm. long can reach the honey. The longer elements are touched by
insects with the head or the base of the proboscis, and the shorter ones
with the maxilla, which forms a sheath to the proboscis, and the plant
is legitimately cross-pollinated. The flowers are very conspicuous in
spring, and, being well supplied with honey at such a season, are much
visited. The oldest and terminal flowers are sterile. The long-styled
plant legitimately pollinated produces three times as much seed as
those described by Hildebrand. The Lungwort is visited by An-
thopkora, Halictus, Bombus, Osmia, Diptera, Andrena, Bombylius,
Rhingia, Rhodocera, Coleoptera, Omalium florale.

Hildebrand pollinated a flower of either form with its pollen or


pollen from another similar flower, and found it was then sterile. When
he pollinated it with pollen from a flower of the other type it was fertile.

Darwin found that when it is self-pollinated a few seeds are pro-
duced. 1 It is usually thus sterile to its own pollen, probably owing to
abundance of insect visitors. When pollen from another similar flower
of the same form reaches its stigma it is also sterile. The nutlets
are dispersed around the parent plant when ripe.

This plant is a humus- and clay-loving plant requiring both humus
and clay. A moth, Anescychia f>usiclla> feeds upon it.

Pultnonarid) Gesner, is from the Latin pitljiw, lung, in allusion to
its reputed curative properties, and the second Latin name refers to
the same usage.

Lungwort is called Adam-and-Eve, Bedlam Cowslip, Beggar's
Basket, Bottle-of-all-sorts, Bugloss Cowslip, Children of Israel, Spotted
Comfrey, Cowslip, Jerusalem Cowslip, Virgin Mary, Cowslip of Bedlem
or Jerusalem, Crayfery, Gooseberry Fool, Honeysuckle, Virgin Mary's
Honeysuckle, Joseph and Mary, Lady's Milksile, Our Lady's Milk-
wort, Lady's Pincushion, Lungwort, Mary's Tears, Sage of Bethlehem,
Sage of Jerusalem, Soldiers -and -Sailors, Spotted Mary, Spotted
Virgin, Virgin Mary's Milk-drops.

The names Adam-and-Eve, Soldiers- and -Sailors are bestowed
because of the versicolorous flowers. As to the name Virgin Mary's
Milk-drops there was a tradition that the spots were caused by drops
of the Blessed Virgin Mary's milk. An old woman was weeding in a
garden when plants of this species were proposed to be turned out,
whereupon she said, "Do 'ee know, sir, what they white spots be?"
" Xo, I do not." "Why, they be the Virgin Mary's Milk, so don't 'ee
turn 'em out for it would be very unlucky." It was also said that from
weeping, one eye which was blue became red, in allusion to the colour
of the flowers. Bottle-of-all-sorts and Joseph and Mary refer also to
the two colours. Cowslip Bugloss alludes to the resemblance to those
flowers. Lady's Milk Sile (or soil or stain) refers to the spotted leaves,
as also does Lady's Pincushion.

The plant was called Lungwort because the spotting of the leaves,
by the Doctrine of Signatures, suggested that the plant was good
for lung disease. The plant has long been grown in gardens in a more
or less sandy soil.


2 i 5. Pnhnonaria officinalis, L. Stem erect, leaves rough, spotted,

1 I'b is happens more usually in the case of the short -styled form, when half the seed produced by
legitimate pollination is formed.


lower petiolate, lanceolate-ovate, upper sessile, oblong, flower pink and
blue or pale purple.

Wood Forget-me-not (Myosotis sylvatica, Hoffm.)

Though no species of this genus have yet been found in England
in ancient deposits, they are known from Gothland, Sweden. In Arctic
Europe, the Canaries, Siberia, Dahuria, and West Asia, or the North
Temperate and Arctic Zones, this plant is found generally. In Great
Britain it is found in N. Wilts, N. Hants, E. Sussex in the Channel
province; not in Kent in the Thames province, or Middlesex, Oxford,
Bucks. In Anglia it is found only in Suffolk and Norfolk, in the
Severn province in East Gloucs, Monmouth, Worcester, Warwick,
Stafford, Salop. In Wales it grows only in Carnarvon and Anglesea,
in the Trent province it is general, but not in Lines, and not in Mid
Lanes in the Mersey province; but it occurs throughout the Humber
and Tyne provinces, in Cumberland, in the Lake province, in Dum-
fries, Kirkcudbright, W. Lowlands, Berwick, Edinburgh, in E. Low-
lands, Stirling, Forfar, Kincardine, in E. Highlands, and in N. Ebudes.
It is found in Yorks at 1200 ft. This species is absent from Ireland.

The Wood Forget-me-not is very local in its distribution, and is
perhaps most uniformly dispersed in central England, where it is
abundant and widespread in woods and copses, so much so as in places
to give quite as characteristic an appearance as the Bluebell in spring.

This . is one of the tallest of Forget-me-nots, growing usually in
dense clumps, with a tall, erect stem, branched above, with oblong,
lance-shaped leaves on long leaf-stalks, with spreading hairs.

The large flowers are a beautiful pale blue like enamel. They are
borne on large loose one-sided cymes on long flower-stalks, twice as
long as the calyx, which is 5 -fid, divided more than half its length,
spreading, with unequal segments, which are acute, and is rounded
below and closed in fruit. The corolla limb is flat and longer than the
tube, which is straight. The nuts are brown, keeled, and attached by
the narrow end.

The flower is 2 ft. high. It is in bloom in June and July. The
Wood Forget-me-not is perennial, increasing by division, and equal to
garden forms.

The anthers attached to the corolla just above the stigma pro-
ject above the corolla when the flower opens, are inclined upwards,
and open longitudinally, being covered with pollen inside like a
figure-of-eight, .005 m. by .003 m. The flower is homogamous, i.e.


anthers and stigmas mature together. The flowers are conspicuous,
and many insects are attracted to them in fine weather. A fly sucking
honey settles for but 2-3 sec. The concealed honey is contained at
the base of the ovary in the bottom of the tube, 2-3 mm. long. An
insect inserts its proboscis between the stigma and anthers, which can
be done from any side, so that a bee or other insect touching the
anthers in one will touch the stigma in the next; and as the proboscis
is withdrawn and again inserted a fly also self-pollinates it. When

WOOD FORGET-ME-NOT (Myosotis sylvatica, Hoffm.;

II. Irving

self-pollinated it is fertile. The plant is visited largely by bees, An-
drcjta, and flies, Eristalis, Syritta, Rhingia, , Scatophaga, Echinomyia,

The flowers are odorous in the evening.

The seeds are hooked, and catch in the wool of animals.

The plant is a humus-lover, growing in humus soil. The second
Latin name refers to its woodland habitat.

The only other name for Wood Forget-me-not is Cat's Eyes.


217. Myosotis syfaatica, Hoffm. Stem tall, erect, branched above,
with spreading hairs, leaves oblong, lanceolate, stalks of lower leaves
dilated, flowers bright blue, limb longer than tube, flat, calyx round
below, hairs on calyx hooked.


Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea, L.)

The Foxglove is distributed throughout West Europe in the N.
Temperate Zone. It is unknown in early deposits. In Great Britain
it is absent in Cambridge, Hunts, Northants, E. Gloucs, S. Lines,
Mid Lanes, E. Sutherland, Shetlands, ascending to 2000 ft. in the
Highlands. It occurs in Ireland and the Channel Islands.

The Foxglove is a plant that frequents upland wooded tracts, stony
hillsides with scattered clumps of trees. In such places it is common.
Elsewhere it is a casual, a few seeds cast adventitiously on sandy
ground propagating and spreading in an astonishingly short period of
time. It does not frequent as a rule low-lying'ground.

The stem is tall and handsome, simple, leafy, downy, with spreading
hairs, rounded. The lower leaves are stalked, between egg-shaped and
lance-shaped, scalloped, toothed, deeply veined, with a marked midrib,
downy both sides. The upper stem-leaves are stalkless.

The flowers are borne upon a long raceme with flowers all turned
one side, on i -flowered flower-stalks, thickened and suberect. The
sepals are between egg-shaped and lance-shaped, with nerves, the
posterior one small. The corolla is bell -shaped, monopetalous or
tubular, purple, with spots within the mouth, gaping behind, and the
upper lip is somewhat cloven, the lower one has rounded segments.
The erect capsule is 2-valved, the seeds numerous, small, round, and
black or reddish-brown, and flattened lengthwise.

The stately stem reaches a height of 4 ft. The Foxglove is in
flower from June to September. The plant is biennial, reproduced by
seeds. It is largely cultivated.

The flower is a big clapper-like bell hanging downwards, protecting
the honey in a ring at the base of the ovary. It is visited only by
humble bees. The anthers mature before the stigma. If insects do not
visit it, it pollinates itself. An annular or ring-like ridge at the base of
the ovary, which is quite smooth and hairy above, secretes the honey,
serving to give a foothold, or to exclude flies, &c. The anthers and
stigma near the upper wall of the corolla point downwards. The lower
stamens mature before the upper and before the stigma, and the longer
first become vertical, then the shorter ones. The 4 anthers open
before the lobes of the stigma separate. The pistil lies between the
anthers. Insects touch the latter on entering, and may remove all the
pollen before the stigma is ripe. If insects do not visit them the
anthers are covered with pollen till the lobes of the stigma have spread


out. When the corolla drops the stigma is smeared with pollen.
Even in dull weather the flowers are pollinated. The Hymenoptera,
Bomb us, Amlrcna, Halictus, Coleoptera, Meligethcs, Antheropkagus,
Dasytes visit it. The flower is self-fertile. The flower lasts six days.

The capsule opens when ripe, the fruit splitting along the partition,
and the seeds fall out automatically or by contraction of their inner
layer of cells.

The Foxglove is a sand-loving plant, growing on sand soil, or a
rock-lover, growing on a variety of rock soil, such as granite or slate.

Two beetles, Antherophagus nigricornis, Apteropoda grawiiu's,
three moths, Melitt 'is artcmis, Small Angle-shades (Euplexia lucipara],
Sword-grass (Calocampa exoletci), and a Heteropterous insect, Dicyphns
pallidicornis, are found on it.

Digitalis, Gesner, is from the Latin in allusion to the finger-like
shape of the corolla, and the second Latin name refers to its colour.

Foxglove is called Dead Man's Bell, Blob, Bloody Finger, Bloody
Man's Fingers, Bluidy Bells, Cottagers, Cowflop, Cowslip, Cowslop,
Dead Men's Bellows, Flap or Pop Dock, Flop or Pious Docken, Dog-
fingers, Dog's-lugs, Dragon's Mouth, Fairies' Petticoats, Fairy Bell,
Fairy Cap, Fairy Fingers, Fairy Glove, Lady's Purple, Flap-dock,
Flobby Dock, Flop-a-dock, Folk's Glove, Fox-docken, Fox-fingers,
Foxglove, Foxter- leaves, Foxtree, Green Pops or Poppies, Goose
Flops, King's Elwand, Lady Glove, Lady's Thimble, Lion's Mouth,
Lusmore, Scotch Wild Mercury, Pop-glove, Poppers, Poppy, Pops,
Rabbit Flower, Snapdragon, Snaps, Snoxuns, Thimble, Fairy Thimble,
Witches' Thimble. It is called Pops (and Pop Dock) because children
inflate the corolla, and then make it bang like a paper bag.

As to the name Snoxuns the forest folk have a saying, " A went
a-buz'n away like a dumbley dory in a snoxun ", which they apply to
a dull preacher. Snock means a sharp blow, and it may be applied for
the same reason as the last. Foxgloves are called Cottagers " because
they belong to the poor people ".

"In Suffolk and Essex", a writer says, "they are called Blobs,
because the children pull off a flower, and with the fingers of one hand
closing up the mouth and giving the other end a slap, it bursts with
a noise like the word blob."

Gerarde says: "Some do call them finger flowers because they are
like unto the fingers of a glove, the ends cut off". In regard to the
name Flap Dock, a writer says: " I knew an old countryman once who
compared a prosy preacher to a drumble clrane (humble bee) upon a
flapper dock." Flowster docken means a dock with showy flower,

FOXGLOVE (Digitalis purpurea, L.)

I'hoto. B. Hanley



flowster being to flourish, flutter in showy colours. Foxglove is folk
(fairies) glove.

The plant was called Witches' Bells because witches were sup-
posed to wear the flowers on their fingers. So, too, fairies' petticoats
were formed of the corolla, and glove and caps also. Fairies used
it as a thimble to mend their clothes. The plant was used as a cure
for hydrophobia.

This plant is poisonous, acting strongly upon the heart, and is used
in medicine, the leaves being used as a sedative and diuretic. The
pulse can be regulated by a careful administration of this drug. Taken
in excess it causes vomiting, purging, delirium, sweating, convulsion,
and death. It is emetic and purgative, and has been used for epilepsy,
and as an ointment for scrofula, tumours, and ulcers.


233. Digitalis purpurea, L. Stem tall, erect, leaves ovate, veined,
downy below, lower petioled, flowers purple, spotted, drooping, in
terminal raceme, campanulate.

Marjoram (Origanum vulgare, L.)

As a woodland species of Northern and Arctic regions one would
almost expect to find evidence that this plant is an ancient one, but so
far it has not been forthcoming. It is found throughout Arctic Europe,
N. Africa, Siberia, Dahuria, W. Asia, as far east as the Himalayas,
and it has been introduced into North America.

In Great Britain it is found in the Peninsula, Channel, Thames,
Anglia, and Severn provinces, and occurs in S. Wales generally, except
in Radnor, N. Wales; in the Trent province except in S. Lines; West-
morland; W. Lowlands, but not in Dumfries; in E. Highlands, not in
Stirling, N. Aberdeen, Easterness; in W. Highlands, only in S.
Ebudes; N. Highlands, Caithness. It is rare in Scotland. In York-
shire it grows at 1300 ft. It is local in Ireland.

Marjoram is one of those sweet-smelling plants which lend such
charm to the woodlands when all the flowers are in bloom. It is found
in upland districts in woods, copses, and plantations, as well as along
the hedgerows, where the soil is dry, or perhaps the surface covered
with a small rubble of stones. Marjoram is an erect plant with a slender,
tetragonal stem, purple, downy, branched, with opposite ascending
branches more slender too. The leaves are opposite, egg-shaped,
stalked and toothed, downy beneath.

The flowers are in dense, corymbose cymes, with egg-shaped


purple bracts or leaflike organs larger than the calyx, purple, the
heads egg-shaped.

1 2 3 4 5 7 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23

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