American Willowherb

March 15th, 2012

Latin:  Epilobium ciliatum

Irish:  Saileachán sráide


This is a non-native species that was first recorded as an introduction to the British Isles from North America in 1891.  It is a perennial that is increasingly frequent in Ireland and is now commonly found on waste ground in cities and gardens and on roadsides.

At Castlewarden it can be found in the Builder’s Paddock and in many of the spinneys populated by broadleaf trees – such as beside the 2nd and 3rd fairways and beside the path from the 4th to the 5th.   It has small (3-5mm wide) flowers with 4 petals that are pale pink, often with darker margins.


It is similar in many respects to Rosebay Willowherb but the flowers are generally much smaller and have deeply notched petals.  It also has 4 longitudinal ridges running down the stem.

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