Information on Squinancywort

Common Name: Squinancywort
Scientific Name: Asperula cynanchica
Irish Name: Lus na haincise
Family Group: Rubiaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period

Click for list of all flowering by month
Squinancywort is not easily confused with other wild plants on this web site.

Only found in the south-west and west of Ireland, this prostrate perennial is related to Cleavers and other Bedstraws.  It creeps across dry grassland and limestone soil on thin, much branching stems.  The tiny pale pink 4-petalled star-shaped flowers (3-4mm across) are borne in dense, terminal clusters from June to September.  The bright green, linear leaves are carried in whorls of 4.  This is a native plant and it belongs to the Rubiaceae family.

I first identified this wildflower on a very overcast, squally and damp day at Black Head, Co Clare in 2004 and I photographed it at that time.  I hope to get back there soon to get a better photo.  

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

The strange common name of this plant refers to its former use as a herbal remedy for the uncomfortable condition of the tonsils known as Quinsy or Peritonsillar abscess.