Lysimachia (Gr.Lysimachia 1000279 ' release from, and Lysimachia 1000280 strife, or in honor of King Lysimachus), a genus of plants of the natural order prima-lacece. They are herbaceous, perennial, and have entire leaves and axillary or racemed, mostly yellow flowers. Species are found in almost all parts of the world, and there are several in the United States. Some are cultivated as garden plants, the most popular of these being the moneywort (L. nummularia), with a prostrate, creeping stem, opposite, roundish leaves, solitary axillary flowers, and ovate acute sepals. It is a pretty plant for covering rock work, or for cultivating in a wire basket, or some hanging ornamental design from which its pendent stems can droop. It is an excellent plant for carpeting the soil beneath shrubs, as it soon forms a dense, closely clinging mat. In some places this has escaped from cultivation and become thoroughly naturalized. Within a few years a variegated form has appeared, an unhealthy-looking plant, with dull yellow leaves.

Several others, as L. thyrsiflora, are in cultivation, but are rarely seen in our gardens.

Moneywort (Lysimachia numnularia).

Moneywort (Lysimachia numnularia).

Among our native species is one with a tall stem on which the leaves are arranged in whorls in fours and fives, and with graceful, yellow flowers protruding from their axils; it is the L. quadrifolia, common in moist or sandy soils. Another, with an erect stem, growing 2 or 3 ft. high, with opposite, heart-oval leaves supported upon ciliate footstalks, and with large showy flowers, is L. ciliata. A southern species somewhat similar, but with leaves and flowers not more than half the size, is the L. radicans; it grows upon swampy river banks in western Virginia and southward. The long-leaved loosestrife (L. longifolia) is to be found from western New York to Wisconsin. The native species are all easy of cultivation, and most of them are pretty garden border flowers. The common name, loosestrife, is applied to the wild and some of the cultivated species of this, as well as to lythrum; according to one of the derivations above given, the name should properly belong to this; Pliny is quoted as authority for the statement that the common European loosestrife (L. vulgaris), if laid upon the yoke of quarrelling oxen, will quiet them.