A smaller form of the otherwise similar Alchemilla mollis, Alchemilla erythropoda has beautiful scalloped, serrated edged foliage which often takes on a blueish-grey hue. Typical chartreuse sprays of flowers are produced in Summer on purply stems and act as a lovely foil to other blooms. Grows about 6 inches high and 8 inches wide and, apart from needing sun for at least part of the day, is very undemanding.
The colour of the flowers of Alchemilla is derived from two rows of sepals, the flowers lack petals.
Medieval alchemist believed the water droplets that collected in the centre of alchemilla leaves possessed magical and medicinal properties. The plant has a long tradition of being used to cure women’s ailments and the plant was consequently named in dedication to the Virgin Mary. The leaves were seen as resembling a mantle (cloak).
Alchemilla derives from the Arabic word ‘alkimiya’ = alchemy