Blue, or violet.




Mostly north.

Time of Bloom


Flowers: small; growing in axillary, one-sided leafy racemes on spike-like branches. Calyx: of five pointless sepals covered by a little cap. Corolla: twolipped, 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; toothed. Stem: smooth and branching.

Mad Dog Skull Cap Scutellaria lateriflora 133

The family of Scutellariae are domestic in their tendencies, and give their best thoughts and attention to their children; for it must be remembered that the seeds are the children of the flowers. On the upper lobe of the calyx there is attached, as though by a little hinge, a sort of concave appendage, or cap. It appears quite superfluous when the bloom is fresh; but as soon as the corolla fades and falls this little cap closes tightly down over the mouth of the calyx, and so prevents the escape of the seeds. The S. lateriflora, which is quite a consequential little inhabitant of wet places, was at one time considered an unfailing cure for hydrophobia.

S. galericulata is a more handsome flower that is found farther north. It has single flowers which grow from the axils of the leaves. Plate CXXVIII illustrates the Scutellaria of sandy soil.