ST JOHN'S WORT : Hypericum perforatum
Also known by its full name, Perforate st John's-wort.
This is a popular shrub with star shaped yellow flowers. The flowers have what appear to be lots of tiny holes in its leaves, hence the perforate in its name.
Its bright yellow flowers appear from June to September and the blood-red juice that exudes from its stems has made it a focus for much myth and ritual. For instance, torchlight processions and gorse-burning were just some of the activities undertaken on Midsummer's Day, a pagan festival soon replaced by the Feast of St John the Baptist, hence the common name of this plant. It's also said that the red juice from its stem represents his bloody murder. [Wildlife Trusts].
The 'holes' in its leaves; these are actually colourless glands that give off a 'foxy' smell. It has bright yellow, star-shaped flowers that are peppered with tiny black dots.
Perforate st John's-wort was traditionally used as a remedy for all kinds of ailments, including wounds and burns. It is still popular today for the treatment of mild depression, yet research and opinion differs on how effective it really is.
As the flowers recede they leave these hard brown seed pods.