You know how it is – you want to collect a little data so you can write a chatty, but informative, narrative. So you give Google a shake and, once he’s finished grumbling, you send him off with explicit instructions, you twiddle your thumbs for 0.0023 seconds, et voila, 10,234,765 results. As usual, he wasn’t listening when you discussed your requirements, and almost all of these results are completely irrelevant. A great many of them are interesting, however, and you waste a good few hours discovering many intriguing facts – totally unrelated to your original concept.
At this point I had already decided to tell you that the flowers in our picture came from the Iberian Peninsular in about 1700, planted by monks in monastery gardens for the red dye produced from their roots. But, just casually checking some spelling, I find that this is Green Alkanet and isn’t related to the plant with the red roots. Still, I felt sure that, if a victim of snake bite chewed some of the leaves and spat them into the serpents mouth, the snake would surely die. Again, no, not this plant.
Green Alkanet isn’t related to real Alkanet at all, and has none of its medicinal or industrial uses – the bees are very fond of it, though.