Some people tell us that this is not a British wildflower, but one which was brought from some other country to grow in our gardens. They say that the wind and the birds carried away the seeds, and the plant learned to grow among our other wildflowers. In any case, you find its handsome flowers adorning chalky banks and cliffs all summer and autumn.
Like the Rest Harrow it is a relation of the Pea family, but its flowers grow quite differently.
In colour they are not such a clear pink. The two petals which hide the stamens are almost purple, and the side wings are so tiny, at first you scarcely notice them.
The flowers grow close together in the shape of a cone; you find twelve or more open flowers with no leaves among them, crowded together near the upper end of a long flower-stalk, and at the top of this flower-stalk there is always a bunch of buds.
The calyx is a green cup with five sharp teeth round the mouth, and it is covered with woolly hairs.
The leaves of the Saintfoin are long and narrow, and the edges are quite smooth. Each leaf is made up of from eight to twelve pairs of leaflets growing opposite each other on a leaf-stalk, and there is always a solitary leaflet growing at the end of the stalk.
What do you think about Saintfoin plants? Why not write a comment below.