Black Horehound

Black Horehound Ballota nigra

Ballota nigra

Black Horehound (Ballota nigra) looks similar to stinging nettles, though is not related to it but to the deadnettles (Lamium). It belongs to the Lamiaceae family.

Black Horehound on stairs
Black Horehound growing next to a staircase. The large leaves at the back right belong to a Burdock.

In locations with good water and nutrient supply, the perennial plant can grow up to one metre high. It flowers from late May/early June until October.

Black Horehound and Burdock on a wall
Black Horehound and Burdock in front of a wall.

In urban areas, Ballota nigra can be found along paths, steps, walls and in parks. It can also grow between paving stones and tolerates dry soil.

Other habitats it uses are embankments and dams. It can cope with sunny to semi-shady sites.

The flowers of the Black Horehound are pollinated by bumblebees and other wild bees.

Bee pollinating Black Horehound
A Bee is pollinating Black Horehound flowers.
Black Horehound in a patch of weeds
Black Horehound with Greater Celandine (yellow flower), Stinging Nettle (bottom left) and Spreading Pellitory (bottom, shiny leaves) in a patch of weeds. Spreading Pellitory, by the way, is related to the stinging nettles.

More members of the Lamiaceae family