Anagallis arvensis L.- Kurzyślad polny – Scarlet pimpernel, commonly known as blue-scarlet pimpernel, red pimpernel, red chickweed, poorman’s barometer, poor man’s weather-glass, shepherd’s weather glass or shepherd’s clock. Scarlet pimpernel is a delicate annual member of the Primrose family that often grows along the ground. This plant can form hybrids with the purple nursery, but it is distinguished by the lack of teething of the petals. Etymology: gr. anagelao = laugh, because in ancient times, the herb was recommended to help in melancholy. ; or from the gr. an = negation + agallein = adorn or agallomai = glory, grasshopper – reference to the plant’s habitat. It’s flowering from May to October. Plant is insect-pollinating and self-pollinating. It is a poor competitor which favours places where the soil is almost free – it finds space in e.g. fields and gardens, and in the old days also in sailing boats’ ballast soil deposits. Prefers clay soils rich in nutrients. Medicinal and poisonous plant.
Curiostity: The name of the plant comes from the appearance of the nerves system of the leaf viewed against the light, which resembles a paw. On cloudy days and at night, the flowers close, open in the morning – they announce good weather.