Open the Advanced Search

Creeping Forget-me-not

Myosotis secunda

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
For more information please download the BSBI Code of Conduct PDF document.


Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Boraginaceae (Borage)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
15 centimetres tall
Bogs, heathland, marshes, mountains, wetland.

Blue, 5 petals
Clusters of small sky-blue flowers. The petal tube is narrow and the petals are rounded. The centres of the flowers are yellow. The petals are very shallowly notched. Similar in appearance to Water Forget-me-not (Myosotis scorpioides) but with narrower sepals, a very short style and smaller flowers. Flowers measure between 4 and 8mm in diameter.
The fruits are dark brown to black, pointed nutlets.
Hairy, lance-shaped leaves. Unlike the similar looking Water Forget-me-not, the stem hairs are appressed above but not below. The leaves appear together in opposite pairs. A perennial plant of wetland habitats.
Other Names:
Creeping Lady's-tresses, Creeping Water Forget-me-not.
Frequency (UK):
Occasionally seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Myosotis secunda is a species of forget-me-not that belongs to the Boraginaceae family. The species is native to the mountain ranges of central and southern Europe, and can be found at elevations of up to 2,500 meters above sea level. It is a herbaceous perennial plant that typically grows to be 5-15 cm tall and has small, blue flowers with yellow centers. The leaves are narrow and hairy, and the plant typically blooms in the late spring and early summer.

This species of forget-me-not is often found growing in alpine meadows, rocky slopes, and along streambanks. It is also often used as an ornamental plant and can be cultivated in gardens with well-drained soil and partial shade. Some botanists also consider Myosotis secunda as a subspecies of Myosotis alpestris (Alpine forget-me-not) which shares a similar habit and habitat but different in petal length and leaf shape.

The name "forget-me-not" comes from the old English "ne mō forgifnes", which translates to "do not forget me." This name is thought to have been given to the plant because of its small, delicate flowers, which were traditionally associated with love and remembrance.


The Creeping Forget-me-not, or Myosotis secunda, is a charming little plant that belongs to the family Boraginaceae. It is native to the western regions of North America, where it grows in a wide range of habitats, including meadows, rocky slopes, and forests. The plant is called "creeping" because it spreads by underground stems, forming a low mat of foliage.

The Creeping Forget-me-not has small, delicate flowers that are a beautiful shade of blue, with yellow centers. The flowers are produced in clusters at the tips of the stems, and they bloom from late spring to early summer. The plant grows to be about six inches tall and wide, and it is easy to grow in gardens, containers, and hanging baskets.

One of the interesting things about the Creeping Forget-me-not is its symbolic meaning. The plant is often associated with remembrance and loyalty, and it has been used as a symbol of love and friendship since ancient times. According to legend, the name "forget-me-not" comes from a story of a knight and his lady who were walking along the banks of a river. The knight picked a bouquet of flowers for his lady, but he was pulled into the water by the weight of his armor. As he was drowning, he threw the bouquet to his lady and called out, "forget-me-not!" The lady then tossed the flowers into the water and said, "I will never forget you."

In addition to its symbolic meaning, the Creeping Forget-me-not has several practical uses. The plant has been used in traditional medicine to treat respiratory and digestive issues, as well as skin conditions. It is also an important source of nectar for bees and other pollinators, and it is a valuable addition to any garden that aims to support local wildlife.

Overall, the Creeping Forget-me-not is a lovely and meaningful plant that is easy to grow and care for. Whether you want to add it to your garden for its beauty or its symbolism, this plant is sure to be a delightful addition to any landscape.

The Creeping Forget-me-not is a hardy plant that can grow in a variety of conditions. It prefers well-draining soil and partial to full sun, but it can tolerate shade and some moisture. The plant is also drought-tolerant, making it a great choice for gardeners in areas with limited rainfall.

One of the benefits of the Creeping Forget-me-not is that it is low-maintenance. It doesn't require much watering or fertilization, and it is generally pest and disease-resistant. However, the plant can become invasive in some areas, so it is important to monitor its growth and contain it if necessary.

In terms of propagation, the Creeping Forget-me-not can be easily grown from seed or by dividing the plant. To grow from seed, simply scatter the seeds on top of the soil and lightly press them down. Water regularly and keep the soil moist until the plants are established. To divide the plant, gently dig up the clump and separate the individual plants, replanting them in new locations.

The Creeping Forget-me-not is a versatile plant that can be used in a variety of ways. It is a great choice for rock gardens, borders, or as a groundcover. It can also be grown in containers or hanging baskets, where its trailing habit can be appreciated. The plant is also an excellent addition to pollinator gardens, providing important nectar for bees and other insects.

Another interesting fact about the Creeping Forget-me-not is that it is an ephemeral plant, meaning it has a short lifespan. The plant typically only lives for one to two years, after which it will die off and re-seed itself. This is why it is important to collect the seeds of the plant if you want to propagate it in your garden.

The Creeping Forget-me-not is also an important plant for the larval stages of some butterfly species, including the Silvery Blue and the Boisduval's Blue. The caterpillars of these butterflies feed on the leaves of the plant, making it an essential host plant for their survival.

In terms of its medicinal properties, the Creeping Forget-me-not has a long history of use by Native American tribes. The plant was used to treat respiratory issues, such as coughs and colds, as well as digestive problems and skin conditions. The leaves were often steeped in hot water to make a tea, which was then consumed or used as a wash.

The Creeping Forget-me-not is also a popular plant for floral arrangements and crafts. Its delicate blue flowers can be used to create wreaths, garlands, and other decorative items. The plant is also a popular choice for dried flower arrangements, as the flowers retain their color and shape when dried.

In summary, the Creeping Forget-me-not is a versatile and meaningful plant that has a lot to offer. Its beauty, symbolism, and practical uses make it a great addition to any garden, and its short lifespan and importance for wildlife make it an important part of the ecosystem. Whether you are a gardener, a nature lover, or simply someone who appreciates a good story, the Creeping Forget-me-not is sure to capture your heart.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

Click to open an Interactive Map