Scarlet pimpernel (Lysimachia arvensis, formally referred to as Anagallis arvensis) is a low-growing broadleaf plant which ranges in its toxicity, from nontoxic to fatal depending on the amount of rainfall. It grows in a variety of different places and often is confused with common chickweed.
Scarlet pimpernel flowers from March through July, and usually salmon-orange color, but sometimes can be blue or white. It's leaves are stalkless, oval to football shaped with triangular tips. They are opposite each other on the stem in a whorl.
All parts of the plant contain toxic compounds, which include saponins and other unidentified compounds. Usually, horses will avoid eating this plant, since it is bitter tasting, unless no other forage is available.
- University of California Davis Scarlet pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis) Integrated Pest Management Program. 2018.
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- Roche, M. J., McCowan, C. I., & Kelly, J. C. Suspected poisoning of cattle by scarlet pimpernel (Lysimachia arvensis L.) Australian veterinary journal, 90(7), 269-271. 2012.
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- Rothwell, J. T., and D. J. Marshall Suspected poisoning of sheep by Anagallis arvensis (scarlet pimpernel) Australian veterinary journal 63.9. 1986.