Monday, February 24, 2014

Creeping Jenny

Creeping Jenny
Lysimachia nummularia
Creeping Jenny has another, perhaps more common, name of Moneywort.  The name Moneywort comes from the leaves, which are the size and shape of coins.   The use of "wort" as a suffix in plant names comes from the Old English word, "wyrt", which just means plant.  Therefore Moneywort means "Money Plant".

As far as the name "Creeping Jenny", there is some speculation that it refers to the fact that it was once used as an herbal remedy for "chinne" cough (whooping cough).  The name would have originally been "Creeping Chinne", but morphed into "Creeping Jenny" when people no longer knew what "chinne" was.

This plant can often be identified just by the leaves. They are roundish, opposite and close together. They have a sort of leathery shiny look.
The flowers are scattered intermittently along the stem, sometimes many and sometimes few.
Creeping Jenny forms mats along the ground. A boon to ground cover lovers and a bane to ground cover haters.

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