Lungwort (Pulmonaria officianalis)

Why it’s in the garden

The word ‘officianalis’ in a plant name means it was considered medicinal. Historically, people used lungwort as a treatment because its leaves look like lungs, and the juice in them is mucus-like; no active component has ever actually been identified. ​We have included it in the garden because its history connects without TB work, and it’s a good plant for groundcover, has attractive flowers and a very long flowering season which is good for insects.

Although there is no active ingredients located within Lungwort that we know of, the chemical structure we have chosen to be linked to lungwort is one of the leading Tuberculosis treatments.

Close up of Lungwot flowers
Chemical Structure: Rifampicin
Chemical Structure: Rifampicin


Lungwort forms low clumps of hairy, green and grey mottled leaves. The flowers range pink/purple/blue, and appear from February to October.

Care and Maintenance

Lungwort is a perennial. It spreads easily and clumps can be split when they get too big. After the first flowering the leaves will look tatty. Trimming of the old flower heads will encourage new growth and a good second flush of flowers.