=Anagallis arvensis var. arvensis
Primulaceae (Primrose Family)
Glabrous diffusely branched annual, the stems, 1-2.5 dm. long; lf. blades
ovate to oval, sessile, 0.5-2 cm. long; pedicels slender, 1-3 cm. long;
calyx-lobes lanceolate, 3-5 mm. long 4-5 parted; corolla rotate, mostly salmon,
sometimes blue, 8-10 mm. across; stamens 4-5; caps. 3-4 mm. long; seed 1 mm.
long, triangular, dark, finely pitted.
Common weed at low elevs., generally below 1000 m.; to Atlantic Coast.
Anagallis is composed of two Greek words meaning "again"
and "to delight in" since the flowers open each time the sun strikes
them. Arvensis means
"of the fields." (Dale 162).
in the study area. Photographed
along Back Bay Dr. in Big Canyon, and along Back Bay Dr. at the north end of
Eastbluff. (my comments). The flowers close at nightfall or
even in cloudy weather. For this
reason it has a number of descriptively amusing common names in England, such as
Poor Man's Weather Glass, Wink-a-peep and John-go-to-bed-at-noon.
The plant contains an acrid poison and was used medicinally as a remedy
for plague, gout, convulsions and hydrophobia in ancient times.
Parson's book, The Wild Flowers of California, published in 1909,
contains almost the exact wording used by Dale for this and several other
plants. (my comment).
The entire plant is toxic and contains a triterpenoid saponin, glycoside
and cyclamin. When eaten by humans,
it causes intense headache and nausea with body pains for 24 hours. In quantity it can be narcotic.
The leaves may cause an irritation to the skin.
Anagallis arvensis var. arvensis and A. arvensis var. coerulea
have been combined into Anagallis arvensis in the 1993 Jepson
Manual. I have continued to keep the two varieties separated. (my
Anagallis arvensis var. arvensis and A. arvensis var. coerulea have been combined into Anagallis arvensis in the 1993 Jepson Manual. I have continued to keep the two varieties separated. (my comment).
Munz, Calif. Flora 404; Munz, Flora So. Calif. 717; Roberts
Photo Ref: April 3 83 #
9,10; April 2 84 # 2; April-May 86 # 6.
Identity: by Robert De Ruff.
First Found: April 1983.
Computer Ref: Plant Data 265.
Have plant specimen.
Last edit 5/20/05.
April Photo April Photo