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Wood Avens: herb Benedict

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Wood Avens: herb Benedict

Although it may not look like at first sight, wood avens (Geum urbanum) is a member of the rose family. On closer inspection the five petals on the flower and the leaves growing in groups of three make this fact a little more obvious. It is, however, a far cry from the roses you may have in your garden! Many of the rose family are simple flowers, just like wood avens, and it shows just how much we humans can manipulate species by selective breeding and cross breeding of plants and animals.

Wood avens is, as its name implies, a flower of woodland. It thrives in shady places so woodland rides and woodland edges are ideal for it, so too hedgerows. It is quite common in such situations and it flowers from May through until late August, possibly in to September. I suppose it is a bit of an ungainly plant, growing quite tall at up to two feet high and so it does tend to sprawl a bit. It may not look much overall but close up that flower is really quite attractive.

This flower is also called herb Bennet which I presume is a corruption of another name for it, Saint Benedict's Herb (herb Benedict --> herb Bennet?). However, I have been unable to establish what connection it has with Saint Benedict. It is used in various herbal remedies but its effectiveness has not been scientifically proven apparently.


 

 

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 4 months ago

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