(Anagallis arvensis) Primrose family

Flower - Variable, scarlet, deep salmon, copper red, flesh

colored, or rarely white; usually darker in the center; about 1/4

in. across; wheel-shaped; 5-parted; solitary, on thread-like

peduncles from the leaf-axils. Stem: Delicate; 4-sided, 4 to 12

in. long, much branched, the sprays weak and long. Leaves: Oval,

opposite, sessile, black dotted beneath.

Preferred Habitat - Waste places, dry fields and roadsides, sandy


Flowering Season - May-August.

Distribution - Newfoundland to Florida, westward to Minnesota and


Tiny pimpernel flowers of a reddish copper or terra cotta color

have only to be seen to be named, for no other blossoms on our

continent are of the same peculiar shade. Thrifty patches of the

delicate little annuals have spread themselves around the

civilized globe; dying down every autumn, and depending on seeds

alone to keep the foothold once gained here, in Mexico and South

America, Europe, Egypt, Abyssinia, Cape of Good Hope, Mauritius,

New Holland, Nepal, Persia, and China. What amazing travelers

plants are! The blue-flowered plants are now believed to be a

distinct species (A. coerulea).

Notwithstanding the fact that many birds delight to feast on the

seeds, or perhaps because of it, for many must be dropped

undigested, the scarlet pimpernel is one of the most widely

distributed species known.

Before a storm, when the sun goes under a cloud, or on a dull

day, each little weather prophet closes. A score of pretty folk

names given it in every land it adopts testifies to its

sensitiveness as a barometer. Under bright skies the flower may

be said to open out flat at about nine in the morning and to

begin to close at three in the afternoon. No nectar is secreted

unless there may be some in the colored hairs which clothe the

filaments. As if it knew perfectly well that however.desirable

insect visitors are - and it has an excellent device for

compelling them to transfer pollen - it is likewise independent

of them, it takes no risk in exposing the precious vitalizing

dust to wind and rain, but closes up tight, thereby bringing its

pollen-laden stamens in contact with its stigma. Manifestly, it

is better for a plant having aspirations to colonize the globe to

set even self-fertilized seed than none at all.

CHARLIE CHICORY SUCCORY BLUE SAILORS BUNK facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail