Lamium galeobdolon-Yellow Archangel

Lamium galeobdolon (Yellow Archangel) on 5-1-09, #9-54.

Yellow Archangel

Lamium galeobdolon

LAY-mee-um gay-lee-OB-doh-lon

Galeopsis galeobdolon
Lamiastrum galeobdolon

I bought this plant from Lowe’s in Greenville, Mississippi in the spring of 2009. I was living at the mansion in Leland at the time. As you can see from the label in the above photo, it said this plant was a Spotted Dead Nettle (Lamium maculatum). That label was incorrect because this plant is Lamium galeobdolon commonly known as the Yellow Archangel.

The infraspecific name Lamium galeobdolon subsp. montanum is very similar. The name montanum means “of the mountains”. This subspecies is not listed in Plants of the World online but is accepted on the 2013 version of The Plant List. It is also an accepted name on the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families from Kew Science. Plants of the World Online is also from Kew but they are still uploading data.


Lamium galeobdolon (Yellow Archangel) on 4-25-10, #52-12.

Lamium galeobdolon (L.) L. is the correct and accepted scientific name for this species. It was named and described as such by Carl von Linnaeus in Amoenitates Academici in 1759 (the 4th edition). It was first named Galeopsis galeobdolon by Mr. Linnaeus in Species Plantarum in 1753.

It was also named Lamiastrum galeobdolon (L.) Ehrend. & Polatschek by Friedrich Ehrendorfer and Adolf Polatschek in Oesterreichische Botanische Zeitschrift in 1966. I swear I am not making these names up. 🙂

Galeopsis is still an accepted genus with 10 accepted species and four accepted infraspecific names (hybrids). The Lamiastrum genus is now a synonym of Lamium. In other words, back where we started in 1759.

Plants of the World Online lists 28 accepted species plus two infraspecific names in the Lamium genus. They say 29 but I guess they miscounted. The 2013 version of The Plant list named 25 accepted species plus 17 accepted infraspecific names. With Plants of the World Online, you have to click on each species to find the infraspecific names of each species. The Plant List has one complete list, including all the synonyms and unresolved names. The Plant List is no longer maintained and wasn’t updated after the 2013 version. Plants of the World Online is by Kew Science, part of the Royal Botanical Garden.

Family: Lamiaceae
Origin: Europe and western Asia
Zones: 4A-9B (-30 TO 25 ° F)
Size: 8-24” tall and wide
Light: Part to full shade
Soil: Average, well-drained soil
Water: Average to dry, drought tolerant
Leaves: Very variable in color and scented
Flowers: Yellow flowers in June with reddish markings on lower lip
Propagation: Division or stem cuttings
Maintenance: Shear plants if they become leggy to 4-6”.
Uses: Groundcover
Concerns: Can become invasive in the right conditions.

Plants spread as stems lean over and touch the ground and take root at the leaf nodes. They also spread from self-seeding. This species is somewhat variable as far as the color of the leaves. Leaves may be solid green, mottled or marbled with silvery-white.

One of the most common Lamium species growing in the yard and flower beds here is the Lamium amplexicaule, commonly known as Henbit.

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