Flowering Plant

Yellow Rattle

Wild Flower

(Rhinanthus minor)

Erect, annual, hairless parasitic herb. Growing up to 50 cm in height. The leaves are narrow-lanceolate, coarsely toothed and slightly wrinkled on the outer edge, stalkless and arranged in opposite pairs. Flowers are situated in short leafy spikes.


Frost Tolerance

Yellow rattle needs a frost to germinate.

Ideal Sowing Time

Sowing should ideally be performed in the autumn, the seeds require a special treatment known as stratification or vernalisation.This means the seeds require a period of prolonged cold to trigger germination.

Distinguishing characteristics


Once the seed has ripened, they are shed into an enlarged calyx, which forms the 'rattle'. Eventually the seeds are shaken out of the calyx onto the ground. The seed is a lightweight disc, very thin but wide (4 mm).


Flowering Plant

Flowering Plant
Each Flower has a flattened calyx that becomes inflated. Corolla is yellow and two-lipped; the upper lip has two short teeth and the lower lip is three-lobed.

Additional Info

Flowers between May-September. The common name derives from the flower colour and the inflated bladder-like seed pod which develops and rattles once the seeds and bladder dry out.

Works well with

Recently, yellow rattle has been widely used in wild-flower mixtures to suppress vigorous grasses and give wild flowers a chance.

Buy Yellow Rattle Straight


Yellow Rattle was believed to be first recorded in 1699.