Wyrtig

For gardeners with a sense of history
 

OE wyrtig, adj: Garden-like, full of plants;
On anum wyrtige hamme, Homl. Skt. ii. 30:312
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Four Commonly Used Medieval Dye Plants

Madder
 

 

 

 

Rubia tinctorum

Perennial

Height: 36”

Zones 5-9

Blooms in summer

Soil: Light, loamy, well drained, dry to moist soils

Light: Sun to semi-shade

Woad
 

 

 

 

 

Isatis tinctoria

Biennial or perennial

Height: 36”

Zones 6-9

Flowers in the second year after planting; deadhead to prevent invasive spread
Soil: Well-drained, moist; tolerates alkaline soils

Light: Sun to semi-shade

 

Weld
 

 

 

 

 

Reseda luteola

Biennial

Height: 60”

Zones 5-9

Blooms in summer; self-fertile

Soil: Well-drained; tolerates alkaline soil

Light: Full sun

 

Dyer’s greenweed
 

 

 


 

Genista tinctoria

Perennial shrub

Height: 24”

Zones 4-7

Blooms summer to fall, self- fertile

Soil: Well-drained; tolerates poor soils and windy locations; fixes nitrogen in the soil

Light: Full sun

 

 

 


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Botanists are among those who know that, in spite of the rude shocks of life,
it is well to have lived, and to have seen the everlasting beauty of the world.
F.D. Drewitt

 

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