This section is from the book "Sub-Alpine Plants Or Flowers Of The Swiss Woods And Meadows", by H. Stuart Thompson. Also available from Amazon: Sub-Alpine Plants: Or, Flowers of the Swiss Woods and Meadows.
Flowers very large and handsome (25-30 mm.), rose-purple, rarely white, upper lip bifid. Corolla-tube much dilated at the throat, at least twice as long as the calyx. Calyx-teeth lanceolate, acuminate, glabrescent. Leaves all petioled, the upper ones acuminate, deeply toothed. Stems thick, glabrous, and often plum-coloured.
Stony places in Alpine valleys; rare. May to October.
Maritime Alps, Dauphiny, Cevennes, Corsica, N. Italy, Bosnia, Montenegro, Algeria.
Stem erect, green, or reddish. Leaves petioled, oblong-ovate, obtuse or sub-acute, entire or with very small teeth. Corolla blue-violet, handsome (20-25 mm.), about twice as large as in the common Self-Heal. Upper lip of calyx with 3 pronounced triangular, acute teeth. Flowers in a short terminal head.
Dry, rocky places from the plains to the Alps. June to August.
Alps, Jura, Pyrenees, Caucasus, Central and Southern Europe.
Stem procumbent and ascending, 4-8 inches high, leafy and branched. Leaves ovate, crenate-serrate; lower leaves stalked; upper leaves sessile, more or less hairy like the flowers and stems. Flowers in a rather dense terminal spike with membranous, imbricate bracts which vary in colour like the flowers (being not always green). Flowers mauve or bluish purple, with the lower lip whitish; sometimes purple, red, or white, and the lower lip tinted accordingly. Upper lip of corolla trifid; lower lip undivided, large. Calyx very small.
Dry, stony places in the Alps and lower Alps, chiefly on limestone; local. June to August.
Carpathians, Western Switzerland, Western Alps, Cevennes, Pyrenees, Siberia. Mont de la Chens in the Var.
The colour of the flowers is extremely variable, and they often vary even on the same plant.
Coarse, hairy herbs with flowers often in whorls of about 6, forming terminal racemes, spikes, or heads. Calyx 5 or 10-ribbed, with 5 nearly equal pointed teeth. Corolla with upper lip concave, entire, and lower lip longer, spreading, 3-lobed; Stamens 4, in pairs under the upper lip. Nuts smooth, rounded at top.
A large genus, spread nearly all over the world, but in tropical regions only in the mountains.
Stem 8-20 inches, erect, simple, few-leaved, rough-haired like the whole plant. Leaves stalked, ovate or cordate, coarsely crenate or dentate. Flowers yellowish white, in axillary cymes forming a dense, false-whorled, capitate spike. Calyx as long as corolla-tube, with sharp teeth one-third length of the tube.
Alpine and sub-alpine pastures. July, August.
Alps, Pyrenees, Carpathians.
Stem 6-12 inches, erect, leafy, and hairy like the whole plant. Leaves cordate, elliptical, coarsely crenate, lower ones stalked; upper pair sessile and turned downwards. Flowers purple-rose in axillary cymes, forming an oval compact spike. Calyx 12-15 mm. long, with lanceolate-acute teeth one-third its length.
Alpine and sub-alpine pastures up to 8200 feet; local. July, August.
Alps, Pyrenees, Spain.