Wildflowers – February


Lesser Celandine

Lesser Celandine

This low hairless perennial of the Buttercup family is one of the first heralds of spring. The flowers are solitary with glossy yellow petals often fading to a whitish hue. The leaves are long stalked, heart-shaped dark green often with dark or light patches. This is a plant of grassland, hedgerows, woods and bare ground.

The plant is poisonous if ingested raw and potentially fatal to grazing animals and livestock such as horses, cattle, and sheep. The plant is known as pilewort by some herbalists, because it has historically been used to treat piles. Lesser celandine is still recommended in several “current” herbal guides for treatment of haemorrhoids by applying an ointment of raw leaves as a cream or lanolin to the affected area.

Flowers February to May.

Lesser Celandine can be found throughout the area and this example was found growing on a sunny grassy bank at the bottom of The Meadows.