Pulmonaria officinalis L.

2514 (2). P. officinalis L., Sp. Pl., ed. 1 (1753) 135; Boiss., Fl. Or. IV (1875) 170; Hayek, Prodr. Fl. Penins. Balc., II (1928) 74 p. p.; Merxm. et Sauer, Fl. Eur., III (1972) 101; Exs.: Pl. Buig. Exsicc. No 860 — Лечебна медуница

Fam:   Boraginaceae Juss.
Genus:   Pulmonaria L.
Species: Pulmonaria officinalis L.
English Name: Common lungwort, Mary's tears or Our Lady's milk drops


Perennial plant .. Rhizome thin, long with with cord-shaped long appendages roots, with membranous flakes. Flowering stem 10 - 20 (30) cm high, ridged, scattered bristly and short glandular fibrous. Summer leaves 3 - 10 (15) cm long, 2.5 - 4.0 (6) cm wide, heart-shaped ovoid or elliptical, dark green on top with white spots and single bristles, with short-fitting bristles, with long petioles, most often equal to or shorter than the leaf blades; stem leaves 4 - 6 (8) cm long, 1 - 2 (3) cm wide, spatulate, bristly on both sides, lower with petioles, upper sessile. Inflorescences small-flowered, leafless, loose. Flower petioles short, bristly and glandular fibrous. Calyx during flower 8 - 12 mm long, in fruit growing to 10 - 15 mm, narrowly bell-shaped, green or blue, with triangular lance teeth, bristly glandular. Corolla 14 - 17 mm long, at the beginning of flowering purple, then - blue, funnel-shaped, the tube inside naked under the ring of hairs. The nuts are narrowly keeled, black, shiny, fibrous.

Economic significance. It is used in folk medicine against inflammation of the respiratory system, as an emollient and astringent.

From:   „Флора на Н Р България”, том IX, БАН, София, (1989)

*   *   *
Pulmonaria officinalis, common names lungwort, common lungwort, Mary's tears or Our Lady's milk drops, is a herbaceous rhizomatous evergreen perennial plant of the genus Pulmonaria, belonging to the family Boraginaceae.


The basal leaves are green, cordate, more or less elongated and pointed and always with rounded and often sharply defined white or pale green patches. The upper surface of the leaves has tiny bumps and it is quite hairy. The leaves of this host plant are eaten by the caterpillars of the moth Ethmia pusiella. In spring, the plant produces small bunches of flowers. The 5-petal flowers are red or pink at first, later turn to blue-purple during the anthesis, by changing the pH value inside of the petals. As a matter of fact the flowers contain a dye that belongs to the anthocyanins and change the color from red (acidic) to blue (alkaline). Pulmonaria officinalis is diploid and has the chromosome number 2n = 14. Flowering period extends from March through May and the seeds ripen from May to June. Pollination is granted by insects (entomophily) - mainly bees, bumblebees and butterflies - the spread of seeds over ants.


This native species is perhaps the most widespread plant in Europe. It is distributed west in the Ardennes up to the Netherlands, Denmark and southern Sweden. It is missing in Norway and it is only naturalized in the British Isles. It reaches central Russia and the Caucasus and it occurs in the Balkans and in northern to central Italy.
It grows in deciduous and beech mixed forests from the lowlands to the mountains. It prefers fresh and shady areas, nutrient-rich and mostly calcareous, stony or pure clay loam soils, at an altitude of 0–1,500 metres (0–4,921 ft) above sea level.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

*   *   *

Flowering Time: Blooms: III - V, fruiting: V - VI.

Distribution in Bulgaria: Growing in bushes and forests, mainly in the foothills and mountains. Distributed, from 500 to 1800 m altitude. (Conspectus of the Bulgarian Vascular Flora) = conspectus&gs_l= Zlc.

Distribution: Central and Southeastern Europe, Mediterranean.

Conservation status and threats:not protected species in Bulgaria by the Biodiversity Law. - Biological Diversity Act -

Medical plant: yes, it is - Medicinal Plants Act -

References: „Флора на Н Р България”, том IX, БАН, София, (1989), Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


© K.Nanev


© Copy right: K. Nanev© 2012. All rights reserved