Snapdragon: The Medicine Dragon

Above: Orange Wonder, Left: Night and Day


Antirrhinum majus, or common snapdragon is native to rocky soils of Europe and North Africa, especially the Mediterranean. One of the true pleasures of growing this plant is watching the bumblebees climb inside the lips of the flower, and almost disappear except for their fuzzy butts! The spikes of “dragon” florets come in ombres of yellow, pink, orange, lavender, white, red, and bicolors. Some varieties such as Madame Butterfly are sweetly scented, while others are scentless. The edible florets can be uses as a floral garnish and the plant itself is known to have diuretic medicinal qualities and was traditionally used as a treatment for tumors, scurvy, and liver disorders. A recent study at the College of Medicine in Iraq showed that the plant has other powerful medicinal qualities for the brain as well.

Bloom time: Spring through Summer