Yellow archangel (Lamium galeobdolon) is a perennial wildflower that belongs to the mint family (Lamiaceae). It has attractive yellow flowers that bloom in clusters on spikes in the spring, and variegated leaves that can brighten up shady areas. It is native to Europe and western Asia, but it has been introduced to other regions as an ornamental ground cover. However, it can also be invasive in some places, spreading rapidly and displacing native plants. In this article, we will learn more about the yellow archangel plant, its characteristics, benefits, and drawbacks.
What is Yellow Archangel?
Yellow archangel is a common name for Lamium galeobdolon, a species of flowering plant that is also known as golden dead-nettle, artillery plant, aluminium plant, or yellow weasel-snout. The name “yellow archangel” may have originated from its virtue of not stinging, despite having leaves that resemble a stinging nettle. The name “dead-nettle” refers to the fact that the plant is not related to the true nettles (Urtica), and does not have stinging hairs.
Yellow archangel is a herbaceous plant that grows from underground runners. It can reach a height of about 40 to 80 cm (16 to 31 in), and forms a mat of foliage. The leaves are opposite, stalked, broadly ovate, toothed, and often purplish on the underside. They have a minty fragrance when crushed. The flowers are soft yellow, less than an inch long, and have a long tube and two lips. The upper lip is hooded and the lower lip has three lobes, with the central one being triangular and often streaked with orange or brown. The flowers grow in whorls in a terminal spike, and attract bees and other pollinators.
There are several subspecies and varieties of yellow archangel, some of which have more attractive foliage than the main species. For example, the variegated yellow archangel (Lamium galeobdolon var. argentatum) has leaves that are streaked with silvery gray, and the silver nettle (Lamium galeobdolon ‘Florentinum’) has leaves that are almost entirely silver. Some cultivars can also be evergreen or semi-evergreen in warm regions.
|Scientific name||Lamium galeobdolon|
|Common names||Yellow archangel, golden dead-nettle, artillery plant, aluminium plant, yellow weasel-snout|
|Family||Lamiaceae (mint family)|
|Origin||Europe and western Asia|
|Height||40 to 80 cm (16 to 31 in)|
|Spread||60 to 90 cm (24 to 36 in)|
|Flower shape||Tubular with two lips|
|Leaf color||Green with purple underside, often variegated with silver or gray|
|Leaf shape||Ovate and toothed|
|Hardiness zones||4 to 8|
|Light||Partial to full shade|
|Soil||Well-drained, moist, fertile|
|Water||Moderate to low|
|Diseases||Powdery mildew, rust|
|Uses||Ornamental, ground cover, border, container, hanging basket, wildlife, medicinal|
|Invasiveness||High in some regions|
How to Grow Yellow Archangel?
Yellow archangel (golden dead) plant care is very easy. Because; Yellow archangel is a hardy and vigorous plant that can grow in a variety of soil types and pH levels, as long as there is good drainage. It prefers a location with partial to full shade, as too much sun can burn the foliage. It can tolerate shallow and rocky soil, and can even grow on walls and slopes. It is best planted in the spring, and can be propagated by seeds, cuttings, or division.
Yellow archangel does not require much care once established, as it can survive in dry and poor conditions. However, it may benefit from some water during extremely hot and dry weather, and some compost or fertilizer in the spring to boost its growth and flowering. It can also be pruned or cut back if it gets leggy or overgrown, to promote a more compact and bushy form.
Yellow archangel is generally resistant to pests and diseases, and is also deer-resistant. However, it can be affected by some fungal infections, such as powdery mildew or rust, especially in humid and crowded conditions. It can also be susceptible to slugs and snails, which may feed on the leaves and flowers. To prevent or treat these problems, it is advisable to provide good air circulation, remove any infected or damaged parts, and use organic or chemical controls as needed.
How to Use Yellow Archangel?
Yellow archangel is a versatile plant that can be used for various purposes. It is mainly grown as an ornamental plant, especially for shady areas where other plants may struggle. It can be used as a ground cover, a border plant, a container plant, or a hanging basket plant. It can also be planted under trees or shrubs, or along pathways or walls. It can create a colorful and attractive display with its variegated leaves and yellow flowers, and provide a contrast to other plants with different colors or textures.
Yellow archangel is also a useful plant for wildlife, as it provides food and shelter for many insects, birds, and small mammals. It is especially attractive to bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, which visit the flowers for nectar and pollen. It can also host some caterpillars, such as those of the silver Y moth (Autographa gamma) and the nettle-tap moth (Anthophila fabriciana). The seeds and leaves can be eaten by some birds, such as finches and sparrows, and the plant can also offer cover and nesting material for them. Moreover, the plant can help to prevent soil erosion and improve soil quality, as it has a dense root system and can fix nitrogen.
Yellow archangel is also a medicinal plant, as it has been used for various ailments in traditional medicine. It has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, astringent, diuretic, and expectorant properties, and can be used to treat wounds, ulcers, hemorrhoids, diarrhea, coughs, colds, and kidney problems. It can also be used to soothe skin irritations, such as eczema, psoriasis, or burns. The leaves and flowers can be made into a tea, a tincture, a poultice, or a salve, and applied externally or internally as needed. However, it is advisable to consult a doctor before using yellow archangel for medicinal purposes, as it may have some side effects or interactions with other drugs.
How to Control Yellow Archangel?
Yellow archangel is a plant that can be both a blessing and a curse, depending on where and how it grows. It can be a beautiful and beneficial plant in some situations, but it can also be a nuisance and a threat in others. It can be invasive in places where it is not native, such as North America, Australia, and New Zealand, where it has been introduced as a garden plant or an escapee. It can spread rapidly and aggressively, and displace native plants and animals. It can also be difficult to eradicate, as it can regenerate from any part of the plant that is left behind.
Therefore, it is important to control yellow archangel if it becomes a problem in your area. There are several methods that can be used to do so, such as:
- Manual removal: This involves pulling, digging, or cutting the plant by hand or with tools, and disposing of it properly. This can be effective for small infestations, but it can also be labor-intensive and time-consuming. It is also essential to remove all parts of the plant, including the roots and runners, and to repeat the process regularly until no more growth is observed.
- Chemical control: This involves applying herbicides to the plant, either by spraying, wiping, or injecting. This can be effective for large infestations, but it can also be costly and harmful to the environment and other plants and animals. It is also important to choose the right herbicide for the situation, and to follow the instructions and precautions carefully.
- Biological control: This involves introducing natural enemies of the plant, such as insects, fungi, or animals, that can feed on or damage the plant. This can be effective for long-term control, but it can also be risky and unpredictable. It is also important to ensure that the introduced agents are specific to the target plant, and that they do not cause any unwanted impacts on the ecosystem.
Is yellow archangel poisonous to dogs?
Yellow archangel is not known to be poisonous to dogs, or to any other pets or livestock. However, it is still advisable to keep them away from the plant, as it may cause some irritation or allergic reactions if ingested or touched. If you suspect that your dog has eaten or come into contact with yellow archangel, monitor its symptoms and contact your veterinarian if necessary.
Is yellow archangel invasive?
Yellow archangel is invasive in some regions where it is not native, such as North America, Australia, and New Zealand. It can spread rapidly and aggressively, and displace native plants and animals. It can also be difficult to eradicate, as it can regenerate from any part of the plant that is left behind. Therefore, it is important to control yellow archangel if it becomes a problem in your area, and to prevent its introduction or escape in the first place.
How to get rid of yellow archangel?
There are several methods that can be used to get rid of yellow archangel, such as manual removal, chemical control, or biological control. However, none of these methods are easy or foolproof, and they may have some drawbacks or limitations. Therefore, it is important to choose the best method for your situation, and to apply it carefully and consistently. It is also important to monitor the results and adjust the strategy as needed.
How to identify yellow archangel?
Yellow archangel can be identified by its distinctive features, such as its yellow flowers, variegated leaves, and minty fragrance. It can also be distinguished from other similar plants, such as other species of Lamium, by its hooded upper lip, its triangular central lobe, and its orange or brown streaks on the lower lip. However, it can also hybridize with some of these plants, creating intermediate forms that may be harder to identify. search link