Centaurium erythrea

Common centaury                                                                   Χόρτο του Χείρωνος

Gentianaceae - gentian family                                                                            Dicot.


The simple bright, light, pink flowers of Centaurium erythraea, with pale yellow stamens are arranged in flat-topped clusters on upright, branched, shiny green stems. Common centaury is widespread in Europe and Asia, except for the far north.

The plant has been named after the centaur, Cheiron; in Greek it is known as the herb of Cheiron and has been used in herbal medicine throughout history, for a variety of ailments.


0.8-1.2 cm,   10-40 cm,                                          JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC

The Myth of Cheiron

Half man and half horse, Cheiron was the son of the Titan, Cronos, father of the Gods. His mother was the sea nymph, Philyra; the two had  mated in the guise of horses, in order to fool Cronos's wife Rhea.

Cheiron  was the leader of and the most intelligent of the Centaurs. He was a teacher and an expert in medicine. His pupils included the god Achilles, the hero Hercules and Aesclepius, the father of medicine. He was an expert in healing herbs and was said to have used centaury to heal himself, when he was wounded accidentally by an arrow shot by Heracles.

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Lesser centauriaCentaurium_pulchellum.html