Error message

  • User warning: The following module is missing from the file system: views_slideshow. For information about how to fix this, see the documentation page. in _drupal_trigger_error_with_delayed_logging() (line 1143 of /hsphere/local/home/orchardtrust/natureofdorset.co.uk/includes/bootstrap.inc).
  • User warning: The following module is missing from the file system: views_slideshow_cycle. For information about how to fix this, see the documentation page. in _drupal_trigger_error_with_delayed_logging() (line 1143 of /hsphere/local/home/orchardtrust/natureofdorset.co.uk/includes/bootstrap.inc).

Lords and Ladies: the name game

Share

Lords and Ladies: the name game

I guess many of us struggle with Latin scientific names. They are so much harder to remember than the English common name. Specific names are important however and this plant really shows why that is so. This is lord's and ladies but is also known as wild arum, cuckoo-pint, snakeshead, adder's root, arum lily, devils and angels, cows and bulls, Adam and Eve, bobbins, naked boys, starch-root, wake robin, friar's cowl, jack in the pulpit and arum lily but is specifically known as Arum maculatum
 
Local English names can cause so much confusion. With birds there is the 'official' list of English names but not so with flora. The specific name is international, everywhere in the world where this plant occurs it will be specifically known as Arum maculatum. 
 
The purple blotched leaves of Arum maculatum appear about Christmas time but it is not until mid April that they come in to flower along our hedgerows and woodland edges. The flower is a bit different from most with that central spike enclosed in a leaf like sheath. Later in the year the spike will bear a series of red berries which are poisonous; indeed the whole palnt can be toxic to some people and is best left untouched.
 
It is a very common plant and can be seen on chalk soils right across the county.
 
So call it what you will, my preference is wild arum, my field guide calls it lords and ladies, but we can at least agree on Arum maculatum!

 

If you would like to see the complete series that this post is part of click here ---->
This nature note was written by ----> Peter Orchard
This nature nore was written ----> 2 years 5 months ago

In case you missed them

... here are my other

... recent nature notes!