Scientific Name:Circaea lutetiana )
Other name: Broadleaf Enchanter's Nightshade
This is a perennial and a member of the Onagraceae Family found throughout the British Isles. It prefers shaded, damp areas and spreads by means of white, cylindrical rhizomes.
In classical mythology Circe the witch is said to have used this plant to turn the shipmates of Ulysses into pigs - hence the scientific or botanical name. It does not appear to have been used in folk medicine, except for a charm given unknowingly to male lovers as an aphrodisiac in the Highlands of Scotland.
It is a food plant for the Elephant Hawk-moth
The oval leaves narrow to a point and are rounded or slightly notched at the base, with a hairy stalk. They are arranged in opposite pairs on upright, hairy stems which are from 20 to 70 cm high depending on local conditions.
The white flowers are held on a long spike above the leaves and appear from June to August. They are pollinated by flies and the small, round, hairy fruits develop later.
It is not usually a problem weed unless it is growing through another plant, and is quite pretty in a woodland garden. It is easily uprooted, but any remaining, brittle underground stems will produce new topgrowth. Care should be taken when transferring plants within the garden or from another garden, which can bring some of the roots.
Weedkillers to use:-
Glyphosate is systemic so is taken down to the roots.