Scarlet pimpernel, Anagallis arvensis

Life Cycle

Annual.

Propagation

Reproduces by seed.

Stems

Smooth, green stems (may be covered in very fine hair).

Leaves

Opposite leaf orientation. Leaves are entire, green, egg-shaped, and less than 2.5 cm in length. Underside of leaves are marked with tiny red/purple or brown spots.

Flowers and Fruit

Small, showy scarlet flowers (can be blue or white but this is uncommon), approximately 0.5 - 1 cm across, growing on long stalks (green or purple) out of axils of the leaves. Petals are slightly joined together at the base and the calyx is deeply cleft into 5 equal parts. Darker pink or purple in the centre where the petals meet. Scarlet flowers open only in the sun.

Habitat

This plant is low-lying and sprawling and can be found along roadsides, gardens, lawns and waste areas.


Figure #1.