Information on St Patrick's-cabbage

Common Name: St Patrick's-cabbage
Scientific Name: Saxifraga spathularis
Irish Name: Cabáiste mhadra rua
Family Group: Saxifragaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period


Click for list of all flowering by month
St Patrick's-cabbage could sometimes be confused with:

Saxifrage, Kidney,

Part of the Lusitanian Flora, this perennial plant is very much a wildflower of the western parts of Ireland.  From May to August it raises erect stems up to 30cm high which bear panicles of star-shaped white, or sometimes pink, flowers (7-9mm across). The five petals are red spotted and the sepals turn down.  The handsome thick, hairless and fleshy leaves are spoon-shaped, with zig-zag teeth which have translucent margins.  These leaves are in a basal rosette which manages to find a foothold on rocks, coastal and mountainy ground.  This is a native plant which belongs to the family Saxifragaceae.  

I first identified this plant at Derrynane, Co Kerry in 1977 and photographed it in nearby Castlecove, Co Kerry in 2008.   

If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre

St Patrick's-cabbage
St Patrick's-cabbage

The familiar garden plant, London Pride, is thought to be a hybrid between Saxifraga spathularis and another member of the Saxifrage family found in the Pyrenees Saxifraga umbrosa.