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Cardamine pratensis

Cardamine pratensis

Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Brassicales
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Cardamine
Species: C. pratensis
Binomial name
Cardamine pratensis

Cardamine pratensis (Cuckoo Flower or Lady's Smock), is a flowering plant in the family Brassicaceae, native throughout most of Europe and western Asia.

It is herbaceous perennial plant growing to 40-60 cm tall, with pinnate leaves 5-12 cm long with 3-15 leaflets, each leaflet about 1 cm long. The flowers are produced on a spike 10-30 cm long, each flower 1-2 cm diameter with four pale pink (rarely white) petals. It grows best close to water.

It is grown as an ornamental plant in gardens, and has as a result of cultivation become naturalised in North America.

It was once used as a substitute for Watercress.


In folklore it was said to be sacred to the fairies, and so was unlucky if brought indoors. It was not included in May day garlands for the same reason.[1]


  1. ^ Howard, Michael. Traditional Folk Remedies, (Century, 1987); p


  • Blanchan, Neltje (2002). Wild Flowers: An Aid to Knowledge of our Wild Flowers and their Insect Visitors. Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation. 
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Cardamine_pratensis". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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