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An evergreen prostrate shrub forming tufts or mats 2 to 4 in. high, the root-stock and lower parts woody; young shoots glabrous, purplish, often creeping. Leaves alternate, wedge-shaped, once or twice notched at the broad rounded apex, tapered gradually to the base, 3⁄4 to 11⁄2 in. long (including the long, slender stalk), 1⁄8 to 3⁄8 in. wide, margins towards the apex often wavy or faintly crenulate. Flowers blue, closely packed in a hemispherical head 1⁄2 to 3⁄4 in. wide, borne at the top of an erect glabrous stalk 11⁄2 to 4 in. high. Corolla two- lipped, the upper lip two-lipped, the lower one three-lobed, all the lobes linear. Calyx five-lobed, hairy, the lobes awl-shaped. Stamens four, conspicuously exposed.
Native of the Alps, Tyrol, and mountains of S. Europe, usually in rocky places and in limestone districts; cultivated in England in 1633, according to Aiton. It flowers in July and August and is worth a place in the rock garden for its neat close habit and its pretty heads of blue flowers with prominently outstanding stamens. Increased by division or by cuttings.