Vervain – Verbena officinalis

Vervain (Verbena officinalis) is sometimes known as European vervain, Enchanter’s plant, Herb of the Cross, Holy herb, Juno’s tears, Pigeon’s grass, Pigeonweed, Simpler’s joy, Herb of Grace. Vervain is a slim herb that can reach the height of 90cm, the stalk of this pant is woody in texture, this is what helps to keep the stem erect. The leaves of this plant are stalked and divided at the base of the plant but the upper plants are slender and toothed. The blue flowers appear in slender spikes which become denser as they reach the tip of the stem. Each flower has 5 petals, although they are more often blue, they can also be white, pink or purple in colour. This herb is often collected just before the flowers open, which is ususally around  july, it is then dried quickly and then used as a herb.

Vervain is valued for its ability to attract many insects and is often used in Butterfly gardens as they attract the Hummingbird Hawk Moth , Chocolate Albatross and the Pipevine Swallowtail.

Height: 50 – 75cm
Flowering Time: July to September
Preferred Conditions: Often found on well drained calcareous soil and most likely on grassland, coastal cliffs and woodland boarders.

Vervain - Verbena officinalis