Monday, 13 June 2011

Orchis morio L.

Image credit: Danijel Balaško (white form)

Latin name: Orchis morio L.
Familia: Orchidaceae
Croatian name: Mali kaćun
English name: Green-winged meadow orchid

Up to 40 cm high perennial, with two egg-shaped tubers, round stem and a few basal leaves. The spike bears several flowers that vary in colour from rare white or purple to more common purple. Sepals form a hood instead of spreading. Leaves never spotted. Flowers very short-spurred, the lip 4-lobed, and no tooth in the acute angle between the broad lover lobes.

purple flowers

Ophrys sphegoides Mill.

image credit: Danijel Balaško

Latin name: Ophrys sphegoides Mill.
Familia: orchidaceae
Croatian name: Kokica paučica
English name: Spider orchid

A perennial plant, with round tubers, up to 30 cm high. Stem bearing 3 -6 ground leaves, 2 - 4 upper leaves and a terminal spike of 2 - 9 greenish to brown flowers. No appendage at the tip of dark brown lip, which is marked in the form of Greek pi.
Yet another endangered species of orchids in Croatia,  it is under special protection.
Can be found on sunny spots in grass land or woods on chalk and lime.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Himantoglossum hircinum (L.) Sprengel

Latin name: Himantoglossum hircinum (L.) Sprengel
syn. Orchis hircina (L.) Crantz
Familia: Orchidaceae
Croatian name: Kozonoška
English name: Lizard orchid

This orchid is a singular rarity. The plant is up to 60 cm high, its spike of fancifully lizard-like flowers often merge into the surrounding herbage. It has a few stem leaves, which soon wither, and a stout spike of short-spurred, purplish grey-green flowers, with hooded sepals. 
It is still rare in turfs on chalk and limestone. Flowers in June to July.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Equisetum arvense L

latin name: Equisetum arvense L.
Family: Equisetaceae
Croatian name: Poljska preslica
English name: Common horsetail

Common on dry places. Up to 30 cm high, erect plant with separate fertile and barren stems.  Fertile stems appear before the barren ones; pale brown, unbranched, with 4-6 loose sheaths and 6-12 dark teeth. Barren stems green, roughish; furrows 6-19, central hollow less than half the width.
Widespread in rough bare and cultivated places.

fertile stems on railway

Lysimachia nummularia L.

Latin name: Lysimachia nummularia L.
Familia: Primulaceae
Croatian name: Protivak
English name: Creeping Jenny

Creeping plant with yellow flowers and blunt, round opposite leaves. The pale green stems and leaves are hairless. Flowers solitary in the leaf axis. It spreads itself rapidly on moist woody places.   
It is also used in horticulture as the ground cover.

Symphytum tuberosum L

Latin name: Symphytum tuberosum L.
Familia: Boraginaceae
Croatian name: Čvorasti gavez
English name: Tuberous comfrey

A perennial plant that grows from tuberous rhizomes by which it spreads itself and colonize the ground. Both, leaves and stems are hairy and rough to touch. The tubular, bell shaped flowers are creamy yellow in colour; calyx with pointed teeth three times long as the tube. Common in woodland shady places. Flowers in April.

Capsella bursa-pastoris (L.) Medik.

Latin name: Capsella bursa-pastoris (L.) Medik.
Familia: Brassicaceae
Croatian name: Pastireva torbica
English name: Sheperd's purse

The commonest small white crucifier, with distinctive triangular seed capsules, flattened and notched. The plant is annual that forms a rosette of lobed leaves at the base. Stem leaves narrow, less toothed than rosette leaves, clasping the stem.
The white flowers in loose racemes along the upper part of the stem. Common on wasteland and abundant weed on cultivated land.

image: Wikipedia

Anthyllis vulneraria L.

image credit: Danijel Balaško

Latin name: Anthyillis vulneraria L.
Familia: Fabaceae
Croatian name: Ranjenik
English name: Kidney vetch, Woundworth

A silky, often greyish perennial, prostrate or up to 30 cm high, with undivided elliptical root-leaves, pinnate stem leaves, and yellow flowers in crowded beards. Calyx swollen, cotton-woolly below.
Common in dry grassy places, especially on chalk and limestone. It flowers May onwards.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Cymbalaria muralis G. gaert. ...

Latin name: Cymbalaria muralis G. Gaertn, B. Mey & Schreb.
syn. Linaria cymbalaria (L.) Mill.
Familia: Scrophulariaceae
Croatian name: Zidni lanilist, Klobučić
English name: Ivy-leaved Toadflax

A trailing hairless perennial, often tinged purplish, with small solitary lilac short-spurred flowers. Flowers have a yellow honey-guide on the lower lip, on long stalks at the base of roughly ivy-shaped, mostly alternate, long-stalked leaves.
Common on walls. Fruit curving downwards into crannies. The flowers became negatively fototropic after fertilization and move into dark crevices of rock or wall holes where the seeds germinates.

Convolvulus arvensis L.

Latin name: Convolvulus arvensis L.
Familia: Convolvulaceae
Croatian name: Poljski slak
English name: Field Bindweed

An attractive perennial plant, prostrate or twining anti-clockwise, up to 70 cm long, with arrow shaped leaves. Flowers white or pink, funnel-shaped, 1-3 together with a pair of tiny bracts well below their stalks. Widespread on fields and wasteland; an annoying weed in the gardens and cultivated land.

Scopolia carniolica Jacq.

Image credit: Danijel Balaško

Latin name: Scopolia carniolica Jacq.
Familia: Solanaceae
Croatian name: Bijeli bun
English name: Henbane Bell

Perennial plant, with bell-like purplish-brown flowers and light green leaves. It grows in wet parts of wood and forest. 
Like many species of the Solanaceae family, it is poisonous.

Asperula taurina L.

Latin name: Asperula taurina L.
Familia: Rubiaceae
Croatian name: Torinska lazarkinja
English name: Woodruff

Erect perennial plant, up to 50 cm high. Leaves in whorls of four. Flowers white, clustered on top of the stem.
Common in moist woods.

Galium mollugo L.

Latin name: Gallium molugo L.
Familia: Rubiaceae
Croatian name: Livadna broćika
English name: Hedge Bedstraw

A floppy, scrambling perennial, with smooth square stems. Up to 1 m high, markedly swollen at the whorls of 6-8 one-veined leaves. Flowers white, small, in terminal clusters. 
Widespread and common in grassland and meadows.