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White Forget-me-not

Plagiobothrys scouleri

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Boraginaceae (Borage)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
50 centimetres tall
Fields, gardens, grassland, meadows, roadsides, wasteland.

White, 5 petals
Tiny white flowers in a flower spike. Flowers have yellow centres and measure between 2 and 4mm wide.
The fruit is a brown, shiny, 4-parted nutlet.
An annual flower with hairy, linear leaves.
Other Names:
Matted Popcornflower, Meadow Popcornflower, Scouler's Forget-me-not, Scouler's Popcornflower, Sleeping Popcornflower.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Plagiobothrys scouleri, also known as Scouler's popcorn flower or Scouler's forget-me-not, is a species of flowering plant in the borage family (Boraginaceae). It is native to western North America, and can be found in the Pacific Northwest and parts of California.

It is an annual herb that typically grows to be 20-50 cm tall. The leaves are hairy, narrow and arranged alternately on the stem. The small flowers are usually white, but can also be pink or blue. They bloom from early spring to early summer. The flowers have five petals, and produce small capsules with seeds that pop when mature.

This species can be found in a variety of habitats, including meadows, fields, and open woodlands. It is commonly found in disturbed areas, such as roadsides and along railroads.

It's a good forage for some wild animals, and its seeds are an important food source for small mammals and songbirds.

It has also been used medicinally by native American people, decoction of the plant is used to relieve pain, sooth sore throat and a tonic. It's also have medicinal properties.

It's not generally considered to be invasive, and it's quite easy to grow in gardens. It prefers well-drained soils in full sun or partial shade. It's considered hardy and drought-tolerant.


The white forget-me-not, also known as Plagiobothrys scouleri, is a delicate and beautiful wildflower that is native to North America. This plant is part of the borage family and is known for its small, delicate white flowers that bloom in the spring and summer. In this blog post, we will explore the characteristics and habitat of the white forget-me-not, as well as some of the cultural and symbolic meanings associated with this lovely wildflower.

Characteristics of White Forget-me-nots

The white forget-me-not is a small plant that typically grows to a height of about 20 centimeters. It has hairy leaves that are typically less than 3 centimeters long and has small, delicate white flowers with five petals. The flowers grow in clusters on thin stems and typically bloom in the spring and summer. White forget-me-nots can be found growing in a variety of habitats, including meadows, open forests, and along streams and rivers.

Habitat of White Forget-me-nots

White forget-me-nots are native to western North America, from British Columbia in Canada to California in the United States. They can be found growing in a variety of habitats, including meadows, grasslands, and open forests. They prefer areas with moist soil, such as along streams, rivers, and seeps. They also prefer areas with partial to full sun exposure.

Cultural and Symbolic Meanings of White Forget-me-nots

The forget-me-not has long been associated with love and remembrance. The white forget-me-not is no exception. In the Victorian era, white forget-me-nots were often given as gifts to express true love and to ask the recipient not to forget the giver. The flower was also associated with memory, and it was often used in funeral wreaths and other remembrance ceremonies.

In Native American cultures, the white forget-me-not was often used in traditional medicine. It was believed to have healing properties, and it was used to treat a variety of ailments, including respiratory issues and fevers.

Today, the white forget-me-not is still a beloved wildflower, and it is often used in gardens and natural areas to attract pollinators and add beauty to the landscape. It is a delicate and graceful plant that serves as a reminder of the importance of love, memory, and the natural world.


The white forget-me-not, Plagiobothrys scouleri, is a beautiful and delicate wildflower that is native to western North America. It is known for its small, delicate white flowers, which bloom in the spring and summer. This plant has a rich cultural and symbolic history, and it is often associated with love, memory, and the natural world. If you are interested in adding this lovely wildflower to your garden or natural area, be sure to provide it with moist soil and partial to full sun exposure.

Blog continued...

In addition to its cultural and symbolic meanings, the white forget-me-not also has ecological importance. It is a valuable nectar source for bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. The plant's small flowers are easily accessible to small insects, and its nectar is a valuable food source for these important insects.

The white forget-me-not is also an important part of the native plant communities where it grows. It is often found in meadows and open forests, where it plays a role in stabilizing the soil and preventing erosion. The plant's roots help to hold the soil in place, which can be especially important in areas with heavy rainfall or steep slopes.

One of the unique features of the white forget-me-not is its ability to reseed itself. The plant produces small, barbed seeds that can easily attach themselves to the fur of passing animals. This allows the seeds to be transported to new areas, where they can germinate and grow into new plants.

If you are interested in adding the white forget-me-not to your garden or natural area, there are a few things to keep in mind. The plant prefers moist soil, so be sure to provide it with regular watering, especially during dry spells. It also prefers partial to full sun exposure, so be sure to plant it in an area that gets plenty of sunlight. Finally, be aware that the plant can reseed itself quite easily, so you may need to manage it carefully to prevent it from becoming invasive.

One interesting fact about the white forget-me-not is that it is not actually a true forget-me-not. The name "forget-me-not" is commonly used to refer to a group of plants in the family Boraginaceae that have small, blue, five-petaled flowers. However, Plagiobothrys scouleri is actually part of the family Boraginaceae as well, but is not a true forget-me-not. It is a separate genus that includes several species of wildflowers, all of which are native to North America.

Another interesting feature of the white forget-me-not is its ability to tolerate shade. While it prefers partial to full sun exposure, it can also grow in areas with some shade, making it a versatile plant that can be used in a variety of garden designs. It can be planted in meadow or woodland gardens, where it can add a delicate, graceful touch to the landscape.

Finally, the white forget-me-not is a great plant for attracting beneficial insects to your garden. Bees, butterflies, and other pollinators are attracted to the plant's small, delicate flowers, and can help to increase the overall biodiversity of your garden or natural area. Additionally, the plant's small size makes it a great choice for smaller gardens or container plantings.

In conclusion, the white forget-me-not is a beautiful and valuable wildflower that can add grace and beauty to any garden or natural area. It has a rich cultural and symbolic history, and is an important part of native plant communities. Whether you are interested in attracting pollinators, adding a touch of elegance to your landscape, or simply enjoying the beauty of this lovely wildflower, the white forget-me-not is a great choice.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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