Information on Red Dead-nettle

Common Name: Red Dead-nettle
Scientific Name: Lamium purpureum
Irish Name: Caochneantóg dhearg
Family Group: Lamiaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period


Click for list of all flowering by month
Red Dead-nettle could sometimes be confused with:

Dead-nettle, Cut-leaved, Dead-nettle, Henbit,

An early flowerer, this downy, aromatic annual blooms from March to November on cultivated and disturbed soils. Through a hand lens it is quite amazing to study. It has 10–18 mm long pink-purple open-mouthed flowers with hooded upper lips and toothed lower lips. On upright stems the flowers are borne in whorls, emerging from heart-shaped, softly toothed leaves, the plant never reaching much above 30 cm high. The leaves are quite often tinged with a bronzy-purple hue. It is a very widespread plant, not beloved by gardeners as it seeds itself very efficiently. It is a native and belongs to the Lamiaceaefamily 

I first identified this plant growing in Dalkey, County Dublin in 1977 and photographed it in Gibletstown, County Wexford in 2005. 

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

Dead-nettle, Red
Dead-nettle, Red

The common name Dead-nettle is given to this plant which has a passing resemblance to a Nettle, because as it does not have stinging hairs, it cannot sting.