A few weeks ago, I posted some photos of the plant called millepertuis in French and Saint John's wort in English. Those showed the cultivated variety, which has very showy bright yellow flowers. Now the wild millepertuis plants are blooming out in the vineyard. I took these photos out along the vineyard road on a recent sunny morning just after 7 a.m.
I'd like to be able to grow these in our yard or even in pots, but I haven't had much luck with them. I guess they haven't been "domesticated" yet. They thrive in full sun and dry soil, I've read. The flowers are very small — less than an inch across. They are also called l'herbe de la Saint-Jean in French. I suppose that's because they bloom around the time of St. John's day, which is June 24. Here's a Wikipedia page about them.
Ken, on your next walk, pick a leaf.... hold it up to the light.... if you can see little pinpricks of light all over the leaf, it is Perforate St John's Wort... the black dots around the edges of the petals are indicating that, too.... Imperforate St John's Wort has black dots all over the petals and no translucent dots on the leaves.... bit they hybridise with the Perforate.........ReplyDelete
Then there's Hairy, Pale, Square-stalked and Wavy.......
Then there's Tutsan and Rose of Sharon... the two garden varieties.... then..........
....but to get some of these in your yard, wait until you see the seed capsules turning brown and collect the seed. then just cast it where you want it. My wild flower and herb Seed Growers Guide says just cast the seed [August>November], don't cover.... likes moisture, but not wet ground... sunny position... and it isn't fussy about soil type.Delete
Thanks, Tim. I'll try that. Do you think I can grow it in pots?Delete
I would have thought so... there are companies in the UK raising seed and selling "wild flowers" in pots... they aren't digging them up, so my guess is they are raising them in modules and potting on.... time of sowing is more important than what it is raised in.... let's face it... weeds seem to find their way happily into flowerpots!!Delete
The French name says it all. Pertuis is an old French word meaning "hole" or "narrow opening". In the case of this plant millepertuis means "thousand holes", because of the number of tiny holes in the leaves.ReplyDelete
But, out of the 17 European species, only the Perforate St Johns Wort has the "holes".....Delete
I have a st john's wort ready to pop...I love the fluffy yellow balls and so do the bees and butterflies....the plant has taken over the garden patch where it is planted so what started out as a reasonable size for the spot is now a huge bush but it can be cut back severely in marchReplyDelete
We have the cultivated variety on our property, with the big flowers, and it is invasive, spreading by putting out underground runners. The variety with small flowers comes up around the vineyard and doesn't seem to spread.Delete
I would love to see this plant someday.ReplyDelete
I’ve never learned so much about a plant in such a short time. Thank you everyone!ReplyDelete