Field Scabious, also called Gypsy Rose or Pincushion Flower, is a medium to tall perennial of the Teazel family. The flowers are on long stalks and are a bluish mauve; they form flat cushiony heads. The leaves are variable and deeply lobed. The stalks are a little hairy. The plant grows over the east, centre and south of the country, nearly always on limestone, on dry grass, road verges and dry banks. It is less common in the north and west. It is visited by butterflies and bees. The Scabious of gardens, used for herbaceous borders, are derived not from this species but from, mainly, Scabiosa caucasica or columbaria or atropurpurea. The name Scabious comes from a Latin word meaning ‘itch’; the English herbalist Culpeper recommended the use of this plant to cure skin disorders.
Flowering starts in June and continues until September.
Field Scabious grows over Britain and northern Europe, the Caucasus and western Siberia.