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A picture of a Scarlet Pimpernel

Scarlet Pimpernel

Anagallis arvensis

Also known as

Poor Man's Weather Glass, Shepherd’s Weather-Glass, Red Chickweed, Bird's Eye, Bird's Tongue, Wink-A-Peep, Burnet Rose, Clockflower, Common Pimpernel, Eyebright, Red Pimpernel, Little Joan, Shepherd's Clock, Sunflower, Blue Pimpernel

Photo by Bonkers_Boo-Boo1 (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Easy care
Light watering
Frost Hardy


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








6 months to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has no fragrance

More images of Scarlet Pimpernel

A photo of Scarlet Pimpernel
A photo of Scarlet Pimpernel

Scarlet Pimpernel Overview

Anagallis arvensis or scarlet pimpernel is a low-growing prostrate annual plant. It does not compete well with other species so it favours locations where the soil is free from other plants. This common European plant is generally considered a weed and is an indicator of light soils, though it grows opportunistically in clay soils as well. In gardens, this species can be displayed with pride at the front of borders and rockeries. The flower is most widely known as the emblem of the fictional hero the Scarlet Pimpernel, hence the common name.

Common problems with Scarlet Pimpernel

Generally problem free

    Scarlet Pimpernel Companion Plants

    Pimpernel does not compete well, so it is best planted on its own with enough space around it to prevent competition from other plants.

    How to harvest Scarlet Pimpernel

    Not harvested

    How to propagate Scarlet Pimpernel


    Sow Scalet pimpernel in situ at a depth of 1/4 cm below the soil surface, with a spacing of 12 to 20 cm after the last frost of spring. It requires between 30 days and 45 days to germinate.