Belongs to: figwort family

Marsh lousewort Pedicularis palustris

Also known as: red rattle


Best time to see: mid May to mid Sep

Key facts

A plant of wet grasslands that is parasitic on grasses, 60cm or so tall with feathery leaves

Reddish-pink flowers throughout summer; also known as 'red rattle' because its seed-pods rattle when shaken

Its name derives from a (mistaken) belief that cattle that ate the plant were invaded by lice

  • Main photo

Photo © Tony Gunton