The pratensis can be mistaken for the vulgaris, but the vulgaris is upright while flowering, and it is more bluish purple than the pratensis. The pratensis has a massive stem, filled with marrow, while the vulgaris has a hollow stem.It flowers in April-May (in DK) here and there on sunny hills, especially in North Jutland and upon the Isles. It grows in open calcium-rich sand- or gravel soil and is especially known from pastures, hills and banks.
Pulsatilla pratensis is relatively rare in Denmark.
There were many sayings about this little Easter flower.
|Pulsatilla vulgaris/ Common Pasque flower/Opret Kobjælde|
The Pulsatilla vulgaris is the most important ingredience in the French tonic hépatotum, taken for the liver (Crise de foie) and for the production of gall. It has some old nicknames too, like blue weather herb and cow ball.
Pulsatilla vulgaris is rare in Denmark and should not be plucked in nature.
The Pulsatilla vernalis , Spring Pasque Flower/ Vår-Kobjælde), is a very low plant, with redbrown or purple, silky haired flower head. It grows in a few places in Jutland. Large bell-shaped, first nodding, then upright flowers - and the vernalis cannot be mistaken for any other flower plant in Denmark. After flowering a large tuft of light seed-wool is formed. The vernalis flowers in April-May-June on dry, poor soil in heaths in Jutland. The fresh plant is poisonous. It was used as a medical herb in various diseases. It was latest seen in Denmark 10 april 2009 in Ulfborg statssskovdistrikt. The Pulsatilla vernalis is the county flower of Oppland, Norway and is depicted in the county coat of arms.
Pulsatilla vernalis is very rare in Denmark , and it is totally listed.
Pulsatilla in general:
1546: a wine decoct from root or seeds to drink in order to drive out bladder stones and menses; the herb or destilled water from the herb to cleanse bad wounds, remove dead meat.
1648: the crushed plant placed as a compress upon the wrist against coldfever (malaria); the juice rubbed upon warts; the dried and pulverized root provokes sneeze like snuff.
1688: the flower used as a compress on a fever pulse; a tea from the plant was drunk against gouts. The herb was sold in pharmacies.
|copy from Inks and pens.|
1761: From the flower juice was produced green ink. Easter eggs were coloured green with the flowers in the boiling water.
In WWII it was recommended to use the roots, which contains saponin as a surrogate for soap bark for delicate wash.
Source: V. J Brøndegaard, folk og flora, bd. 2 Dansk Etnobotanik, Rosenkilde og Bagger; Danmarks fugle og Natur, Felthåndbogen, april 2012.
Photo, Bjerre, Thy: stig bachmann nielsen, Naturplan.dk