Blue or violet.
Connecticut, southward and westward.
Flowers: one inch long; growing in terminal racemes. Calyx: two-lipped; the upper lip covered by a helmet-like little cap, Corolla: two-lipped with long ascending tube, the upper lip helmet-shaped and curving over the lower lip, which is flaring and indented at the apex. Stamens: four, in pairs of unequal length. Pistil: one; stigma, two-lobed. Leaves: opposite; lanceolate to linear. Stem: one to two feet high. The whole plant is covered with a soft down.
Nothing can be more bewitching than a stalk of these blue flowers intermingled with their light green leaves. The helmetlike petal of a deep purplish blue hangs over the others and gives the blossoms an odd expression, as though they were simply helmets and open mouths; the latter just ready to snap out any morsel of gossip that might be interesting to the passers by.
S. pilosa, hairy skullcap, Plate CXXVIII, has opposite roundish, or ovate leaves, and flowers growing in a short raceme with spatulate bracts. It is a taller species than the preceding and is more pubescent. The blossoms are smaller.
S. lateriflora and S. galericulata, pages 126 and 127.