Friday, 28 September 2018


Ever been needled by stitch, that sharp pain in the side whilst exercising? Greater Stitchwort, Stellaria holostea, was used as a herbal remedy to treat this affliction.

The deeply notched petals make it appear to have 10 petals although there are only 5. The genus name Stellaria is derived from 'stellar' meaning star-like referring to the flower shape. The species name holostea is derived from a Greek word 'holosteon' meaning entire bone. Apparently, this refers to the brittleness of the weak stems.

Old Man's Beard

Traveller's Joy, Clematis vitalba, is from the Buttercup family and also known as Old Man's Beard due to the feathery fruits. Good for pollinators, but folklore suggests it does the work of the devil by choking other vegetation in the hedgerows!

This is the only UK native clematis and a vigorous climber. Once it has finished flowering, the feathery heads aid seed dispersal.