Rude names

Carrot Fly, she who know’s more about plants than anyone else in the world, mentioned a plant who’s name I found highly amusing last night (and you would find it amusing too if you had done nothing but sit around the flat waiting for a delivery never to arrive and speaking to no-one and having the highlight of the day as cleaning your fridge).  Rapistrum rugosnum, a brassica found mainly in wasteland and originated from the Black Sea and the Med and rather pretty. Common name Bastard Cabbage. Tee hee! Are there any crazily named plants you can think of readers?

Rapistrum rugosum flowersfruits.jpg (43984 bytes)


19 Responses

  1. What about the Tit Poppy?

  2. Do I win a prize for ” Rubus Cockburnianus”? …say it slowly.

    And just to prove I didn’t make it up….

  3. …Oh, and I think the mint family is called “Labiatea”…due to shape of the leaves.

  4. Rubus cockburnianus, the white-stemmed bramble…. a botanist having a right laugh there! I do also find Stinking Willy amusing (our very own herb robert, or Geranium robertianum), because of its… unusual smell…. good old British plant names.

  5. There’s something called “Tagetes patula Naughty Marietta” but I don’t know what it is 🙂

  6. “Strong growing, upright, thorny purple stems” now that’s an opening sentance for Rubus Cockburnianus! I’m almost tempted to start a hedgerow with it. The Tit Poppy is awesome and I forgot about stinking willy, I almost blogged about it when we saw it in Dorset.

  7. Tagetes patula is a ‘French Marigold’, but I guess a ‘naughty’ variety… I wonder who Marietta was!

  8. Naughty Marietta is an operetta and also a film. I know because my mum used to in an amateur operatics society and they performed it one year.

  9. Here’s another while we wait for Mildew to add another entry, Sticky Willy, friend of Stinking Willy, otherwise known as cleavers, or Galium aparine, which boys at school would pick and throw at girls’ hair, and has spiny ballbags for fuits ! (as Russell B might say) 😉

    these names I learned from an eccentric botanist at reading uni, who obviously has an affection for english plant names!

  10. My favourite is the fungus stinkhorn, latin name phallus impudicus. To make matters worse, it does indeed smell like a decaying rabbit!

  11. I remember when I was but 9 years old coming across that fungus in the depths of mine and mildew’s nana’s old garden in Dorset, which incidentally was big and sloping and full of places to explore, and there were dozens of the things, an image to be imprinted on my mind forever. I couldn’t understand why mum and nana were giggling so much.

    Do you remember that moment sister?

  12. I read that as ‘phallus implodicus’ and had a cold sweat 😮

  13. Mildew’s off ensnaring all the boys in her beehive hairdo!

  14. I’ll be back soon, I promise! Hang on, I’ll write a quick post

  15. Well now… there’s Bastard Balm (Melittis melissophyllum)and Bastard Service Tree (Sorbus x thuringiaca).
    Ramping Fumitorys has always struck me as rude although I can’t quite say why? Top pick would be Tall Ramping Fumitory (Fumaria bastardii).
    Of course the most well hidden rude plant name is Cuckoo Pint (Arum maculatum). If I recall correctly this is of Anglo Saxon origin and means “lively penis”. The other common name Lords & Ladies is also somewhat suspect I imagine.
    I often wondered about Sqinancywort (Asperula cynanchica). I mean what’s a Squinancy?

  16. Squinancywort… apparently thought to cure quinsy (an abscess between the back of the tonsil and the wall of the throat), nice!

    can’t really beat the true meaning of Arum maculatum eh? 😉

  17. What an all around great post

  18. Above all, a well executed piece!!!

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