Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Nancy Pretty...a plant of many names.

I've been doing a lot of gardening lately and taking some quick snaps. Here's an old favourite of mine that's been in my garden for years and years...was even in my last garden.

The first name I learned for this plant was Nancy Pretty some 30+ years ago. It is sometimes called London Pride, St. Patrick's Cabbage, Whimsey, Prattling Parnell, and Look Up And Kiss Me, but it also goes by the name of Saxifrage Urbium.

It's a fantastic little plant if you want a carpet of ground cover fairly quickly, though it's less invasive than many other ground cover plants. It's a pretty hardy little plant, isn't fussy if the ground dries out a bit and has very attractive variegated leaves. It thrives in neglect- which is just as well in my garden!

It has traditions all of its own, in part due to that tolerance. After the Blitz in London during the Second World War it colonised many bombed sites. Noel Coward wrote a song about it - London Pride - which became very popular and was designed to uplift the spirits of the Londoners.

Flowers have a language of their own and London Pride is said to stand for frivolity. Some would claim that it has a special day on the 27th of July.

Perhaps you know even more about this lovely little plant.

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