Thursday, 13 August 2009

Tansy

A yellow flowered plant this morning, growing tall along the paths of Shipley Park. Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare) is a member of the daisy family with inflorescences like little yellow buttons.
Used in the past as a cure for intestinal problems including parasitic worms, it was also said to help with rheumatism and measles. Tansy has had long be associated with the dead as the stems were wrapped into the funerary cloths used to cover bodies in order to repel insects and worms. For the same reason, Tansy was also rubbed into raw meat to keep the flies away!
Also in flower near the site of the old hall is this delicate little flower, the Harebell (Campanula rotundifolia).
More usually found growing on heaths and higher ground, it makes a welcome addition to the flora of these parts. Harebells leaves sometimes exude water from their tips, which can be mistaken for dew. This is caused by the water pressure in the plant and is called 'Guttation-exudation' from a 'hydathode' or water-producing pore in the leaf.
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