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Pale Forget-me-not

Myosotis stolonifera

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Boraginaceae (Borage)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
30 centimetres tall
Gardens, mountains, waterside, wetland.

Blue, 5 petals
Pale blue or whitish flowers which appear in small terminal clusters. Similar in appearance to Water Forget-me-not (Myosotis scorpioides) but with smaller flowers (4 to 6mm across) and a very short style.
A dark brown or blackish nutlet.
A perennial plant with bluish-green, lance-shaped leaves.
Other Names:
Creeping Forget-me-not, Short-leaved Water Forget-me-not.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Myosotis stolonifera, commonly known as creeping forget-me-not, is a species of flowering plant in the family Boraginaceae. It is a low-growing, creeping perennial that is native to Europe and Asia, and is often grown as a ground cover in gardens. The plant produces small, blue flowers with yellow centers that bloom in the spring and summer. The leaves are green and hairy, and are arranged in a basal rosette. The plant spreads by means of underground stolons, which can root and form new plants. It's a good plant for rock gardens and it thrives in moist, shady areas, but can tolerate full sun in cooler climates. It prefers moist soil and cool temperature, but is generally considered easy to grow and care for.

It's also known for its medicinal properties, the plant contains compounds that have anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antimicrobial properties, and have been traditionally used to treat a wide range of conditions, including skin diseases, infections, and wounds. They also contain flavonoids, terpenoids, and saponins that have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties.

It's a common invasives plant species in North America, So it should be planted in a contained area or monitored to ensure it doesn't escape cultivation and spread into natural areas where it can outcompete native plants.


The Pale Forget-me-not, also known as Myosotis stolonifera, is a beautiful and delicate plant that is native to New Zealand. This plant belongs to the family Boraginaceae and is closely related to other species of forget-me-nots.

The Pale Forget-me-not has a creeping habit, and it forms dense mats that can cover large areas. It has small, pale blue flowers with yellow centers that bloom from early spring to late summer. The flowers are held on slender stems that rise above the foliage. The leaves of this plant are hairy, oblong, and dark green, with a slightly rough texture.

The Pale Forget-me-not prefers to grow in damp, shaded areas, such as along stream banks or in moist forests. It can also be found growing in alpine areas, where it often forms mats on rocky slopes. This plant is a popular choice for gardeners looking to create a naturalistic look in their gardens. It is easy to grow and care for, and it can be used as a ground cover or as an accent plant.

One of the unique features of the Pale Forget-me-not is its ability to propagate by stolons. These are runners that grow along the ground, rooting at nodes along their length. This allows the plant to spread rapidly, forming large mats in a relatively short period of time. The stolons also enable the plant to quickly colonize areas that have been disturbed or damaged.

In addition to its beauty and ease of cultivation, the Pale Forget-me-not has a number of other uses. In traditional Maori medicine, the leaves of this plant were used to treat a variety of ailments, including coughs, colds, and rheumatism. The plant has also been used as a natural dye, producing a blue pigment that was used to color textiles.

Unfortunately, like many other species of forget-me-nots, the Pale Forget-me-not is at risk from habitat loss and degradation. In its native range, the plant is threatened by logging, land clearance, and the spread of invasive species. In order to protect this beautiful and unique plant, it is important that we take steps to conserve its natural habitat and to prevent further damage to the ecosystems in which it grows.

The Pale Forget-me-not is not only a beautiful and useful plant, but it is also an important part of the ecosystem in which it grows. As a ground cover plant, it helps to prevent soil erosion and runoff, which can have a significant impact on the health of local waterways. The plant's leaves and stems also provide important habitat and food for a variety of insects and other small animals, which in turn support larger predators in the food chain.

In addition to its ecological importance, the Pale Forget-me-not is also a symbol of remembrance and hope. The forget-me-not has long been associated with the idea of not forgetting, and has been used as a symbol by a variety of organizations and causes, including the Alzheimer's Association, the National Kidney Foundation, and the World War II Veterans Association.

For gardeners and plant enthusiasts, the Pale Forget-me-not offers a number of interesting and unique features. Its delicate blue flowers and creeping habit make it a great choice for adding color and texture to rock gardens, borders, and other landscape features. The plant is also relatively low-maintenance, requiring only regular watering and occasional fertilization to thrive.

If you are interested in growing Pale Forget-me-not in your own garden or landscape, there are a few things to keep in mind. This plant prefers moist, shaded areas with well-drained soil, and it does not do well in areas with intense sunlight or heat. It can be propagated by dividing clumps of established plants, or by planting stem cuttings.

Overall, the Pale Forget-me-not is a beautiful, useful, and important plant that deserves our attention and protection. Whether you are a gardener, a nature lover, or simply someone who appreciates the natural beauty of the world around us, the Pale Forget-me-not is a plant that is well worth getting to know.

One interesting aspect of the Pale Forget-me-not is the symbolism behind the name "forget-me-not." According to legend, a knight and his lady were walking along a riverbank when the lady noticed a beautiful blue flower growing in the water. The knight, eager to please his lady, reached out to pick the flower, but lost his balance and fell into the river. As he was being carried away by the current, he threw the flower to his lady and called out "Forget me not!" This story has been retold in various forms over the years, and the forget-me-not has come to be associated with love, remembrance, and the idea of not being forgotten.

The Pale Forget-me-not is also closely related to a number of other species of forget-me-nots, including the Alpine Forget-me-not (Myosotis alpestris) and the Common Forget-me-not (Myosotis scorpioides). These plants share many of the same characteristics as the Pale Forget-me-not, including their delicate blue flowers and creeping habit.

In terms of conservation, efforts are currently underway to protect the Pale Forget-me-not and other threatened species in New Zealand. The government has established a number of protected areas, including national parks and wildlife reserves, where these plants can grow and thrive in their natural habitats. There are also a number of organizations and advocacy groups working to raise awareness of the importance of conserving New Zealand's unique and diverse ecosystems.

In conclusion, the Pale Forget-me-not is a beautiful and important plant that has a rich history and a bright future. Whether you are interested in gardening, conservation, or simply enjoying the natural world around us, this plant is sure to capture your attention and your heart. So next time you see a cluster of delicate blue flowers growing in a shaded, damp area, take a moment to appreciate the beauty and significance of the Pale Forget-me-not.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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