Myosotis arvensis or field forget-me-not is a herbaceous annual to short lived perennial flowering plant in the family Boraginaceae. Field forget-me-not is usually an annual or biennial herb. Its success is based on its flexibility. The seeds can wait in the soil for a suitable time to sprout for up to 30 years and germinate when conditions become favourable. Field forget-me-not’s flowers are pollinated by small flies and hymenopterans, and if needs be the plant can also self-pollinate to ensure its seed production. The plant often spreads via the whole calyx, which has hooked hairs that can catch on to animal fur or people’s clothes and carry it to new habitats. Field forget-me-not is happy on different kinds of soil and can be spotted as often on rocky outcrops as in vegetable gardens, where it can be a nuisance weed for farmers and gardeners alike.
Upright, to 40 cm; softly hairy, with hairs at more-or-less right-angles to the stem.
Flowers grey-blue, 3-5mm across, saucer shaped in profile; sepal tube with hooked hairs; April–October.
Mature fruit dark brown, shiny.
Mature calyx on spreading stalks longer than sepal tube; calyx teeth conceal the ripe fruit.
Basal leaves stalked, in a rosette; upper leaves not stalked.
Generally found on open, well drained ground; common throughout the British Isles.
This plant is useful.
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