Plants With Animals' Name

Seodaemun Museum of Natural History

Living things have two names, “scientific name” for scientific need, and “common name” a name that is based on the normal language of everyday life. In Korea, there are plants with common names, named after animals' name. In many cases they are closely related to the animal-appearance, odor or habitat. 

Common Leafflower
Phyllanthus urinaria
Distinctive round fruit are borne on the undersides of the lateral branches at the leaf axils.

Korean swamppink
Heloniopsis koreana (Liliaceae)
It is a endemic herbaceous species of the Korean Peninsula.

Oriental penthorum
Penthorum chinense
Flowers are yellow-white, borne in a cyme at the top of the stem in July.

Common valerian
Valeriana fauriei
Its flowers bloom in the May to June. Root is used as medicine.

Prickled-vine smartweed
Persicaria senticosa
The flower is reddish, bloom between July and August, arrange in headlike inflorescence at the end of the stem.

Sweep's woodrush
Luzula capitata
It is commonly known as sweep's woodrush and used as food by birds.

False goat's beard or Chinese astilbe
Astilbe chinensis
It is known as Chinese astilbe. Its flower color is a pinkish purple.

East Asian wintergreen
Pyrola japonica
Its common name is Japanese wintergreen. It spreads by means of underground rhizomes. White flowers bloom in early summer.

Asian tearthumb
Persicaria perfoliata
It is a trailing herbaceous annual vine with barbed stems and triangular leaves.

Three-leaf clematis
Clematis apiifolia
It is a deciduous climber growing to 3 m.

Pacific firmoss
Lycopodium chinense
They are flowerless, vascular plants, with small, simple, scale-like leaves that cover the stem and branches thickly.

Oriental columbine
Aquilegia buergeriana var. oxysepala
It is Asian columbine. It is herbaceous perennial plant growing to 100 cm tall.

Asarum sieboldii
The deciduous, heart-shaped leaves are opposite, and borne from the rhizome.

Muskroot-like semiaquilegia
Semiaquilegia adoxoides
It is spurless columbine. Tiny white flowers are produced in April to May.

Asian liverleaf
Hepatica asiatica
Its flower appears before the leaves unfurl.

Tuberous-rooted meadow rue
Thalictrum filamentosum
The white flowers are small and are produced in conspicuous dense inflorescence.

Tricuspidate falsenettle
Boehmeria tricuspis
Its narrow pink pipe cleaner flowers hang from the stems.

Maack's larkspur
Delphinium maackianum
Flowers are produced in racemes from July to September.

Big-flower lady's slipper
Cypripedium macranthum
The flower has three acute petals with the third a striking slipper-shaped lip, which is lowermost.

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