Belongs to: flowers

Lords and ladies Arum maculatum

Also known as: cuckoo pint


Best time to see: mid Apr to late May

Key facts

Green sheaths emerge in woods and along shady hedgerows in spring, enclosing a purple spike

They give off a smell and heat to attract flies, which are trapped to pollinate the flower spike inside the sheath

The heart-shaped leaves are spotted with black; the fruit are a spike of red berries

Extras

Baked and ground up, the roots were formerly used as a substitute for arrowroot and as starch

  • Main photo
  • fruit

Photo © Owen Keen

Photo © Owen Keen