We need to raise £10,000 from user donations to get our finances in balance. More >>>

Follow Us:

 

Glechoma hederacea - L.

Common Name Ground Ivy, Field Balm, Gill Over The Ground, Runaway Robin
Family Lamiaceae or Labiatae
USDA hardiness 3-10
Known Hazards A report in the medicinal uses says the plant should be used with caution, no reason is given. Another report says that the plant might be toxic to horses[222]. Avoid if pregnant as abortifacient. Contraindicated in epilepsy. Avoid if kidney disease [301].
Habitats Damp waste ground, hedgerows and woodland margins[7].
Range Most of Europe, including Britain, northern and western Asia to Japan.
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (3 of 5)
Care
Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Glechoma hederacea Ground Ivy, Field Balm, Gill Over The Ground, Runaway Robin


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Glechoma_hederacea_Sturm27.jpg
Glechoma hederacea Ground Ivy, Field Balm, Gill Over The Ground, Runaway Robin
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Llez

 

Translate this page:

You can translate the content of this page by selecting a language in the select box.

Summary

Bloom Color: Lavender. Main Bloom Time: Late summer, Mid summer. Form: Prostrate, Spreading or horizontal.


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Glechoma hederacea is an evergreen Perennial growing to 0.2 m (0ft 8in) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a fast rate.
It is not frost tender. It is in leaf all year, in flower from March to May. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Bees.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms

Nepeta glechoma. N. hederacea. Calamintha hederacea. Chamaecissos hederaceus.

Habitats

Woodland Garden Dappled Shade; Shady Edge; Ground Cover; Hedgerow;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Condiment;  Tea.

Young leaves - raw or cooked[9]. The leaves have a bitter flavour[5], they can be mixed into salads to add a slight aromatic tang[7]. They can also be cooked like spinach, added to soups etc or used as a flavouring[2, 183]. Available very early in the year. A herb tea is made from the fresh or dried leaves[2, 177, 183]. It is often used mixed with verbena leaves[7]. The herb has been added to beer in much the same way as hops in order to clear it and also to improve its flavour and keeping qualities[4, 183]. This species was the most common flavouring in beer prior to the use of hops from the 16th century onwards[238].

Medicinal Uses



Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Anodyne;  Antidiarrhoeal;  Antiphlogistic;  Antirheumatic;  Appetizer;  Astringent;  Digestive;  Diuretic;  
Febrifuge;  Miscellany;  Pectoral;  Stimulant;  Tonic;  Vermifuge.

Ground ivy is a safe and effective herb that is used to treat many problems involving the mucous membranes of the ear, nose, throat and digestive system[254]. A well-tolerated treatment it can be given to children to clear lingering catarrh and to treat chronic conditions such as glue ear and sinusitis[254]. Throat and chest problems, especially those due to excess catarrh, also benefit from this remedy[254]. The leaves and flowering stems are anodyne, antiphlogistic, appetizer, astringent, digestive, diuretic, febrifuge, pectoral, gently stimulant, tonic and vermifuge[4, 9, 21, 100, 147, 165, 178]. They are best harvested in May whilst still fresh[4], and are dried for later use[238]. The leaves are used in the treatment of hypersensitivity in children and are useful in the treatment of kidney diseases and indigestion[4, 9, 21, 100, 147, 165, 178]. Applied externally, the expressed juice speeds the healing of bruises and black eyes[4]. Use with caution[21].

Other Uses

Miscellany.

A good ground cover plant for shady places. It is rather vigorous though and can swamp smaller plants[197].

Cultivation details

Landscape Uses:Container, Ground cover. Prefers a heavy soil and dappled shade[17, 31]. Prefers a moist well-drained soil, succeeding in sun or shade[188]. A very invasive plant, spreading freely at the roots[1, 31, 238]. A good bee plant[108]. Special Features:Attractive foliage, Fragrant foliage, Not North American native, Naturalizing, Attractive flowers or blooms.

Propagation

Seed - we have no information for this species but suggest sowing the seed in situ as soon as it is ripe, or in the spring. Division in spring or autumn[188]. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Expert comment

Author

L.

Botanical References

17

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

QR Code

What's this?

This is a QR code (short for Quick Response) which gives fast-track access to our website pages. QR Codes are barcodes that can be read by mobile phone (smartphone) cameras. This QR Code is unique to this page. All plant pages have their own unique code. For more information about QR Codes click here.

1. Copy and print the QR code to a plant label, poster, book, website, magazines, newspaper etc and even t-shirts.

2. Smartphone users scan the QR Code which automatically takes them to the webpage the QR Code came from.

3. Smartphone users quickly have information on a plant directly for the pfaf.org website on their phone.

Add a comment

If you have important information about this plant that may help other users please add a comment or link below. Only comments or links that are felt to be directly relevant to a plant will be included. If you think a comment/link or information contained on this page is inaccurate or misleading we would welcome your feedback at admin@pfaf.org. If you have questions about a plant please use the Forum on this website as we do not have the resources to answer questions ourselves.

* Please note: the comments by website users are not necessarily those held by PFAF and may give misleading or inaccurate information.

To leave a comment please Register or login here All comments need to be approved so will not appear immediately.

Subject : Glechoma hederacea  
All the information contained in these pages is Copyright (C) Plants For A Future, 1996-2012.
Plants For A Future is a charitable company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales. Charity No. 1057719, Company No. 3204567,
Web Design & Management
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. Some information cannot be used for commercial reasons or be modified (but some can). Please view the copyright link for more information.