Unlike most other species of plantain, the Serpentine Plantain is a true survivor and can also be found in tough and dry locations. It is a close relative of the Beach Plantain, which is widespread on salty soils in coastal areas. The Serpentine Plantain grows to between 10–30 cm high. Its leaves are rather leathery and fringed at the edges. Its inflorescences are spikes, i.e. unbranched inflorescences with sessile single flowers.
Facts and Figures
The botanical species name serpentina is no accident. This plantain grows on serpentine soils which have certain chemical and physical properties. They contain few nutrients and high concentrations of heavy metals. This poses ecological challenges for plants – so our Serpentine Plantain is a tough cookie that can handle any conditions.
The Serpentine Plantain is widespread in the mountains of Central and Southern Europe. In Switzerland, it grows in nutrient-deficient meadows in scree and along the edges of paths, especially in Valais, Ticino and Graubünden. more information