Choose a country to see content specific to your location

Skip to main content
A picture of a Monkshood


Aconitum napellus

Also known as

Friar's cap

Aconitum napellus-4595 by Danny S. (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Partial Shade
Moderate care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy


USDA zone


Minimum temperature

Expected size








5 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

More images of Monkshood

A photo of Monkshood
A photo of Monkshood

Monkshood Overview

Aconitum napellus is a stunning mid to late summer flowering perennial for the back of borders. It's common name "Wolfsbane" is believed to be because it was included in bait to kill wolves and foxes. Handle with care (gloves & long sleeves) and you will be rewarded with beautiful blue-dark violet, pea-shaped, hooded flowers above attractive dark green foliage.

Common problems with Monkshood

Generally pest free

How to harvest Monkshood

Generally not harvested

How to propagate Monkshood


Divide in autumn every 2/3 yrs but it can be slow to re-establish.


Requires a cold spell to activate germination. Direct sow or in pots in autumn. Alternatively, in spring, refrigerate the seeds for 2 weeks then sow as normal. Germination can take 2 to 4 weeks and maybe erratic.

Special features of Monkshood

Attracts bees

Other uses of Monkshood

Placed at the back of flower borders and beds this plant suits formal urban spaces to informal cottage gardens. A useful plant that is resistant to rabbits.

Water Garden | Area Specific

Explore all


About usCareersPrivacy policy

Candide is your guide to visiting UK public gardens. Find the best gardens, buy tickets and enter with just your phone. Download the app for offline tickets, community access and more.

Terms & ConditionsCode of Conduct

© 2023 Candide

Made in Bristol