Information on Bog-rosemary

Common Name: Bog-rosemary
Scientific Name: Andromeda polifolia
Irish Name: Lus na móinte
Family Group: Ericaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period

Click for list of all flowering by month
Bog-rosemary is not easily confused with other wild plants on this web site.

This is a very small undershrub which grows in some of our acid bogs, mostly in the centre of Ireland. It scarcely reaches 40 cm high, and can easily be missed as it grows surrounded by mosses. A hairless evergreen, its smooth, brown branches carry long, narrow, pointed alternate leaves which are white underneath and have rolled-down margins. These shiny, dark-green leaves have minute traceries of veins on them. The little pink flowers (8–10 mm) start to bloom in early May, strong pink at first, fading to a paler colour in June. They are urn-shaped with five short lobes and they hang on slender stems in small clusters. A native plant, Bog-rosemary belongs to the Ericaceae family.

I first recorded this plant in the Irish Peatland Preservation Council's Lodge Bog, Lullymore, Co Kildare in 2010 when I photographed it.   

If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre

The common name given to this plant – Bog-rosemary – is due to the resemblance of its leaves to those of the shrub Rosemarinus officinalis or Rosemary, the fragrant leaves of which are used to flavour Mediterranean cooking. However, the two plants are unrelated.