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Anagallis arvensis, Scarlet Pimpernel, Shepherd's Barometer, Poor man's weatherglass

Scientific name:  Anagallis arvensis L.
Common name:  Bird´s-Eye, Scarlet Pimpernel, Shepherd's Barometer, Poor man's weatherglass
Family:  Primulaceae

Anagallis arvensis, Scarlet Pimpernel, Shepherd's Barometer, Poor man's weatherglass

Life form:   Therophyte, annual
Stems:  fleshy; square in cross section
Leaves:  Opposite, entire
Inflorescence:  Flowers in axils of upper leaves; pedicels to 4cm long, recurved in fruit
Flowers:  Calyx lobes connate at the base; corolla blue or scarlet-red, petals dentate or entire, glandular-ciliate; glands numerous, 3-celled, the terminal cell globose; stamens with bearded filaments
Fruits / pods:  Round 5 ridged lid-capsule; capsules opposite, quite prolific along the stems, seeds papillose
Flowering Period:   March, April
Habitat:   Batha, Phrygana

Anagallis arvensis, Scarlet Pimpernel, Shepherd's Barometer, Poor man's weatherglass


Derivation of the botanical name:
Anagallis,(given by Dioscorides) from the Greek Anagelao, signifying 'to laugh,' from its use in treating depression.
arvensis, arvum, field, cultivated land, plowed land; ensis adjective suffix for nouns: country or place of origin or habitat. MeaningL: "of cultivated fields".
Pimpernel is from the Latin bipinnella, applied in the sixteenth century to plants with bipinnate leaves.
Several of the common names, " Shepherd's Barometer and poor man's weatherglass", relate to weather forecasting, since the flowers open and close with changing weather.
  • The standard author abbreviation L. is used to indicate Carl Linnaeus (1707 – 1778), a Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist, the father of modern taxonomy.
Once it was regarded as a medicinal herb, with uses dating back to Pliny and Dioscorides.

Anagallis arvensis, Scarlet Pimpernel, Shepherd's Barometer, Poor man's weatherglass


 
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