Glechoma hederacea L. - Ground Ivy
Family - Lamiaceae
Stems - Repent, herbaceous. Flowering portions erect, to +30cm tall, glabrous or often strigose on angles.
Leaves - Opposite, petiolate. Petioles densely retrorse pubescent, reduced upward. Blades reniform to orbicular, to +3cm long (and wide), typically glabrous but also sparsely pubescent. Margins crenate.
Inflorescence - Axillary clusters of 2 or more flowers, secund. Pedicels to 1.5mm long.
Flowers - Corolla blue-purple, bilabiate, to +2cm long. Corolla tube bearded internally at apex, with purple spotting internally. Upper lip single-lobed, with notch at apex. Lower lip 3-lobed. Lateral lobes small, 2mm long. Central lobe 3-4mm long, 4mm broad, with dark purple spotting. Stamens 4, included. Style to 7mm long, white, glabrous. Stigma 2-lobed, purple. Calyx tubular, 6-7mm long, with 12-15 nerves(ridges), 5-lobed. Lobes acute to acuminate.
Flowering - March - July.
Habitat - Moist ground, low woods, slopes, roadsides, railroads, disturbed sites, waste ground.
Origin - Native to Europe.
Other info. - This little
plant is one of the first to bloom in the spring and is quite striking.
It prefers a somewhat shaded location and moist ground. The plant was cultivated
at first but is now escaped and quite common. The flowers produce 4 nutlets
each. Since it is introduced, it should not be propagated outside of cultivation.
Photographs taken in Columbia, MO., 4-15-04.