A Bright Blue Weed - Green Alkanet

Sometimes the little things catch your attention. This small blue flower had been lurking under the hedge. Assuming it was ‘just’ a forget-me-not it had been ignored. However, a little bit of mind management one blustery morning with a camera revealed that it wasn’t as it seemed.

Green alkanet (Pentaglottis sempervirens) is a member of the Boraginaceae family, the same as forget-me-not’s, hence my confusion but is more closely related to borage and comfrey. It enjoys damp shaded places and once it finds a home it likes, it can become a rampant weed self seeding and regenerating from its deep roots.

It has a hairy stem and ovate leaves which are covered in tiny hairs making it appear bristly. The buds are pink, opening into a deep blue flower with five petals and a white inner. In flower between April and June it is one of the earlier sources of food for bees and butterflies.