A perennial native species with beautiful blue flowers. Asian flax is an insect-pollinated plant growing in dry meadows, steppes and grasslands. Since 2004, it has been under strict species protection in Poland. Wild, non-cultivar seeds.
€2,25 – €9,00
Polish name: Austrian flax
Latin name: Linum austriacum
Family: the flax family Linaceae
Status in Poland: native, rare, protected in natural locations
A short to medium-high long-lasting plant with erect, bare, and alternate spiral foliaged above-ground shoots.
Narrow leaves are characterized by 1-3 veins, and a lanceolate shape with acute apex.
The flowers do not differ in structure from the rest of the flax genus, they are actinomorphic, five-petaled, and strongly blue with an azure shade. They form from May-June to August or September.
The fruit in the form of a brown ovate capsule on a rigid, nutant stalk. The most important differences between the Asian flax, and the perennial L. perenne are: nodding fruit stalks after ripening in the Asian flax, and ascending in the perennial one. Thedifference between the outer and inner sepals of the calyx 0.3-0.6 mm in the perennial, and only 0-0.29 in the Asian.
Asian flax requires places with permeable, lime soil, and a very warm microclimate. The place must be very sunny, it tolerates drought perfectly well.
In Poland, it was rarely planted as an ornamental plant in the past. It was presented primarily in botanical gardens as a steppe relic, and a species protected by law.
As a strongly continental climate species it does not need winter cover, unlike perennial flax. In addition, it turned out to be quite resistant to soil and air contamination, as it grows on railway and tram embankments or on highway slopes.
Naturally rare species, observed only in relict vulnerable locations.
It was taken under protection in Poland in 2004. 10 years later it was raised to the higher rank of a threat category on the Red List of endangered species.
No data for the Use Value of this species of flax was found in the available literature. Related, wild flaxes, e.g. golden L. flavum are sometimes intentionally sown by beekeepers as honey plants.