Even though this wildflower is commonly known as Red Valerian, the flowers are not always red, they can also be pink and sometimes creamy white. A perennial plant, frequently found growing on railway embankments, old stone walls and coastal pathways, this plant can reach 75cm in height. It holds its fragrant flowers (8-10mm long) in dense panicles. Each corolla is a slender tube with lobed unequal petals and has a spur at its base. The leaves are grey-green, untoothed, ovate and in opposite pairs. Flowering from June to September, this is an unmistakeable plant which made its way to Ireland from the Mediterranean. It belongs to the family Valerianaceae.
My first record of this plant is in 1977 at Killiney, Co Dublin where it grows on the dry stone walls along the Vico Road.
If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre