Name: Purple Loosestrife
Scientific name: Lythrum salicaria
Nature Stars: 60
About: Found in reedbeds, fens and wet habitat. Many tall stems may grow from a single root stock. It flowers between June and August when its nectar becomes a valuable food source for long-tongued insects like bees and butterflies.
How to identify: Look for tall, pink flower spikes and long green leaves shooting off symmetrically from the stem.
Where: Widespread across the UK and Ireland, less so in the Scotland
Fantastic fact: Purple Loosestrife is a big problem in North America, where it is an invasive weed: their equivalent of Himalayan Balsam.
Photograph credit: Richard Burkmar