Stem. - Tall and slender. Leaves. - Oblong, toothed, the lower sometimes lyre-shaped, the upper partly clasping. Flowers. - Yellow or white, tinged with red or purple, in a terminal raceme. Calyx. - Deeply five-parted. Corolla. - Butterfly-shape, of five rounded, somewhat unequal lobes. Stamens. - Five, with filaments bearded with violet wool and anthers loaded with orange-colored pollen. Pistil. - One.
Along the highway from July till October one encounters a slender weed on whose erect stem it would seem as though a number of canary-yellow or purplish-white moths had alighted for a moment's rest. These are the fragile, pretty flowers of the moth mullein, and they are worthy of a closer examination. The reddened or purplish centre of the corolla suggests the probability of hidden nectar, while the pretty tufts of violet wool borne by the stamens are well fitted to protect it from the rain. A little experience of the canny ways of these innocent-looking flowers lead one to ask the wherefore of every new feature.