SelfhealPrunella vulgaris L.
The flowers of this perennial have no obvious floral scent, and attract bees, small butterflies, moths, and skippers. Some moth larvae eat the leaves, but mammalian herbivores do not like their bitter taste. Plants have been used for medicinal purposes, widely as a remedy for throat illnesses. They prefer disturbed sites, sometimes becoming weedy. Seeds are flung from their fruits when rain hits the calyx tube, causing it to spring back.
Canadian Rarity Status:
Not rare. Listed as “may be at risk” in Saskatchewan and the Yukon.
Unbranched, solitary or clustered stems grow 10-50 cm tall, are hairy, and 4-sided. The opposite leaves are lance to oval-shaped with smooth to bluntly-toothed edges. Tubular flowers occur in a dense terminal spike above the upper leaves. Each one is hairy inside, and divided into an upper, hood-like lip and a lower, fringed, 3-lobed lip. Fruits (four nutlets) are clustered together inside the persistent, dark green to purplish, hairy calyx.
Marsh Hedge-nettle (Stachys pilosa Nutt.)
Seeds and/or plants may be available from greenhouses and seed supply companies specializing in native plants. Plants are a good addition to prairie gardens.
- British Columbia
- New Brunswick
- Nova Scotia
- Prince Edward Island
- Fescue Prairie
- Tall Grass Prairie
- Full Sun
- Part Shade
- Andrenid Bees, Miner/Digger Bees (Andrenidae)
- Bee Flies (Bombyliidae)
- Bumble, Honey, and other Bees (Apidae (Subfamily Apinae))
- Flower Flies (Syrphidae)
- Leafcutter and Mason Bees (Megachilidae)
- Parasitic Flies (Tachinidae)
- Skippers (Hesperiidae)
- Sweat Bees, Halictid Bees and other Bees (Halictidae)
- Whites, Sulfurs, Orangtips, Marbles (Pieridae)