Water Figwort - Scrophularia auriculata


    Fairly tall plant (to 1 metre) the stems narrowly winged on the angles. One characteristic for identification of this species is a pair of leaflets on the petiole of the leaf - however these are not always well developed and may be absent. Calyx lobes with pale, broad membranous margins. The staminode is diagnostic and is more or less orbicular and entire.

    Similar Species

    Common Figwort (Scrophularia nodosa) and Green Figwort (S umbrosa)

    Identification difficulty
    ID guidance

    Square, winged stems; leaves blunt and with rounded rather than sharp teeth (crenate); calyx-lobes with a wide scarious border (i.e. a broad thin papery edge). 

    Green Figwort is similar, but with pointed leaves and a bifid staminode with two divergent lobes; it is scarce in VC55 

    Recording advice

    A photo of whole plant, including leaves as well as flowers.


    Wet habitats, water margins, ditches, dykes and marshes.

    When to see it

    June to September.

    Life History


    UK Status

    Very common in much of England and Wales but not in Scotland.

    VC55 Status

    Very common in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 476 of the 617 tetrads.

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

    Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
    Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

    UK Map