Alchemilla mollis, the garden lady's-mantle[2] or lady's-mantle,[3] is a species of flowering plant in the family Rosaceae. This herbaceous perennial plant is native to Southern Europe and grown throughout the world as an ornamental garden plant. It grows 30 to 45 cm (12 to 18 in) tall, with leaves that are palmately veined, with a scalloped and serrated margin. The stipules are noteworthy in that they are fused together and leaf like. The chartreuse yellow flowers are held in dense clusters above the foliage. A. mollis has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.[4] The plant self-seeds freely and can become invasive.

Alchemilla mollis
Flowering plant
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Alchemilla
Species:
A. mollis
Binomial name
Alchemilla mollis
(Buser) Rothm.

According to some accounts, lady's mantle has been used for centuries as a herbal remedy.[5] According to other authorities, however, it has never been used medicinally, but has been confused with two species that have a history of medicinal use: A. alpina (Alpine lady's mantle) and A. xanthochlora.[6]

Showing the beading effect of water on its leaves due to hydrophobicity

The plant is often grown as groundcover, and is valued for the appearance of its leaves in wet weather. Water beads on the leaves due to their dewetting properties. These beads of water were considered by alchemists to be the purest form of water. They used this water in their quest to turn base metal into gold, hence the name Alchemilla.[7] The Latin specific epithet mollis means "soft", referring to the hairs on the leaves.[8]

Lady's mantle is an invasive species in the Faroe Islands, where local authorities have encouraged the public to uproot the plant if they find it.[9]

Notes

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  1. ^ Khela, S. (2013). "Alchemilla mollis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2013: e.T202918A2758009. Retrieved 20 January 2023.
  2. ^ BSBI List 2007 (xls). Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-06-26. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  3. ^ USDA, NRCS (n.d.). "Alchemilla mollis". The PLANTS Database (plants.usda.gov). Greensboro, North Carolina: National Plant Data Team. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Alchemilla mollis AGM". RHS Plant Finder. Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  5. ^ Tadić, Vanja; Krgović, Nemanja; Žugić, Ana (2020). "Lady's mantle (Alchemilla vulgaris L., Rosaceae): A review of traditional uses, phytochemical profile, and biological properties". Lekovite sirovine (40): 66–74. doi:10.5937/leksir2040066T. ISSN 0455-6224.
  6. ^ Gardner, Jo Ann; Holly S. Dougherty (2005). Herbs in Bloom: A Guide to Growing Herbs as Ornamental Plants. Timber Press. p. 79. ISBN 978-0-88192-698-9.
  7. ^ "All hail the magical power of lady's mantle". Alys Fowler. 19 August 2017. Archived from the original on 20 January 2023. Retrieved 20 January 2023.
  8. ^ Harrison, Lorraine (2012). RHS Latin for Gardeners. United Kingdom: Mitchell Beazley. ISBN 184533731X.
  9. ^ "Public asked to help fight off pesky weeds". Kringvarp Føroya. 10 July 2020. Retrieved 12 July 2020.