[ stop the slideshow ]

Saponaria officinalis Linnaeus, 1753

Saponaria officinalis-Kallipefki-Larissa1.jpg <b><i>Saponaria officinalis</b></i> Linnaeus, 1753||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/08/20/20130820210039-6fe41ce8-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Emberiza cirlus</i></b> Linnaeus, 1766 ♀||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/07/16/20130716184936-c785c834-th.jpg><b><i>Saponaria officinalis</b></i> Linnaeus, 1753||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/08/20/20130820210039-6fe41ce8-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Emberiza cirlus</i></b> Linnaeus, 1766 ♀||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/07/16/20130716184936-c785c834-th.jpg><b><i>Saponaria officinalis</b></i> Linnaeus, 1753||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/08/20/20130820210039-6fe41ce8-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Emberiza cirlus</i></b> Linnaeus, 1766 ♀||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/07/16/20130716184936-c785c834-th.jpg><b><i>Saponaria officinalis</b></i> Linnaeus, 1753||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/08/20/20130820210039-6fe41ce8-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Emberiza cirlus</i></b> Linnaeus, 1766 ♀||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/07/16/20130716184936-c785c834-th.jpg><b><i>Saponaria officinalis</b></i> Linnaeus, 1753||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/08/20/20130820210039-6fe41ce8-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Emberiza cirlus</i></b> Linnaeus, 1766 ♀||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/07/16/20130716184936-c785c834-th.jpg><b><i>Saponaria officinalis</b></i> Linnaeus, 1753||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/08/20/20130820210039-6fe41ce8-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Emberiza cirlus</i></b> Linnaeus, 1766 ♀||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux//2013/07/16/20130716184936-c785c834-th.jpg>

Saponaria officinalis Linnaeus, 1753
Common names: Common Soapwort [En], Saponaire officinale, Herbe à savon, Herbe à foulon [Fr], Zeepkruid [Nl], Gewöhnliches Seifenkraut [De], Saponaria [It], Saponaria, Jabonera [Es], Σαπωνάρια, Σαπουνοχορτο [Gr], Çöven [Tu]

Kallipefki, LARISSA ● Greece

Description: Common perennial plant. The plant possesses leafy, unbranched stems (often tinged with red). It grows in patches, attaining a height of 70 cm. The broad, lanceolate, sessile leaves are opposite and between 4 and 12 cm long.
Its sweetly scented flowers are radially symmetrical and pink, or sometimes white. Each of the five flat petals has two small scales in the throat of the corolla. They are about 2.5 cm wide. They are arranged in dense, terminal clusters on the main stem and its branches. The long tubular calyx has five pointed red teeth.

Biology: In the northern hemisphere soapwort blooms from May to September, and in the southern hemisphere October to March.

Habitat: It grows in cool places at low or moderate elevations under hedgerows and along the shoulders of roadways, on river banks.

Distribution: throughout Europe to western Siberia.

Uses: As the name implies, it can be used as a very gentle soap, usually in dilute solution. It has historically been used to clean delicate or unique textiles.
A lathery liquid that has the ability to dissolve fats or grease can be procured by boiling the leaves or roots in water.
In the Middle East, the root is often used as an additive in the process of making the popular sweet, halvah. The plant is utilized to stabilize the oils in the mixture or to create a distinctive texture of halvah.

References:
Wikipedia, Common Soapwort