Common toadflax (Linaria vulgaris)


Collins, 220; Readers Digest,

This is a short to medium hairless perennial with pretty yellow flowers that have an orange spot on the lower lip. The plant is in flower from June to October and likes the barer banks and wasted spaces. The name derives from the fact that it was originally treated as a plant that was so useless as to be only fit for toads. Interestingly, the mouth of the petal tube is closed by a fold of the lower lip and only a heavy insect such as a bee can depress the palate to gain access to the tube. As the bee seeks nectar at the tip of the flower’s spur, pollen is exchanged.