One of the fifty fundamental herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, this low growing perennial has spear-shaped leaves and stems spreading along the ground which then turn upwards at the tips. A quite spectacular plant, it bears dense sprays of sizeable, hairy, tubular, bluish-purple helmet-shaped flowers, which are produced in summer.
Seeds can be sown at any time but are best sown in winter or early spring to benefit from a cold spell in the wet compost to break their dormancy. We advise covering seeds very thinly with sand or fine grit to about the depth of the seed size. If the seeds do not come up within 6 to 12 weeks the damp seed tray can be given cold treatment in a fridge for about four weeks. They may still take very many months to appear, so please never discard the pot or tray.
Scutellaria galericulata P. Small attractive, creeping perennial with blue flowers. Flowers: August. Requires: Sun and damp soil. Height: 30cm.
The common skullcap, marsh skullcap or hooded skullcap, It is a member of the mint family. It is a wetland-loving species and grows along marshes and shorelines. Common skullcap are mainly known for their traditional use as mild anxiolytics in the form of herbal teas.
Plants can be cut back in fall time. Skullcap patches can be dug and divided every few years to increase vigour and prevent the plants from crowding themselves out.
Our own farm-grown Blue Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) seeds for organic growing.
1 pkg (approx 60-80 seeds)
Skullcap likes rich moist soil and can be found in the wild growing along edges of wetlands and streams. In the garden it does fine if given fertile soil and a good soaking every other week or so.
I like to tell my students that Skullcap is like a big warm cozy blanket. Or more precisely: Skullcap is like being tucked into a big warm cozy blanket under clean sheets on the most comfortable bed ever after the best day you had hiking in an alpine meadow with your best friends. You feel soothed, calm, a bit giddy with contentment, and perfectly sleepy.
Blue Skullcap, Mad Dog Skullcap