At WiseGEEK, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.

Learn more...

What is a Yellow Archangel?

Mary Ellen Popolo
Mary Ellen Popolo

Yellow archangel is a plant also known as Lamium galeobdolon or yellow lamium. It is a hearty perennial that grows and spreads easily, requiring little or no care. These traits make it a perfect candidate for ground cover or for growing in areas that have difficulty sustaining other plants, such as under trees or in poor soil conditions. Its aggressiveness and the ease with which it spreads and covers ground classify yellow archangel as an invasive plant and a noxious weed in some areas.

Part of the Lamiaceae — or mint — family, yellow archangel has a somewhat unpleasant odor that does not at all resemble mint. Yellow archangel also can be identified by several other characteristics. Its leaves are oval in shape, serrated, fuzzy and variegated with both silver and green colors on the top, and a lighter shade of green on the bottom. The stems are green, square in shape, and fuzzy.

Man mowing the grass
Man mowing the grass

Yellow archangel can grow to be more than 1 foot (30.5 cm) tall. This plant is trailing and vine-like in most growing conditions, though it can stand upright when grown in areas of full sunlight. Flowers will bloom in late spring to early summer, producing yellow, bell-shaped flowers that grow in clusters close to the stem. The plant itself is semi-evergreen.

Yellow archangel grows quickly in both full and partial shade, making it ideal for ground cover in areas that otherwise will not yield or sustain foliage. Its vine-like quality makes it a popular choice for hanging or cascading flower pots. It is semi-evergreen and very dense, so it is commonly used in flower beds, though you need to maintain it with regular trimming or it may overtake the entire bed. The combination of its aggressiveness and creeping tendencies make it difficult to control, and it will not hesitate to grow over other plants, stumps and flower bed edging.

This plant can be hard to eliminate in its entirety, because it can easily be spread by dropped cuttings, root fragments and stem seeds, which can cause regrowth. The best way to remove this plant effectively and entirely is to pull the entire plant up by the roots, making sure that all root and stem fragments are removed and disposed of properly. Composting the removed plants will cause regrowth. Yellow archangel cannot be controlled or removed by cutting or mowing alone. Herbicides can effectively be used to eliminate unwanted yellow archangel, though the process may need to be repeated several times to ensure that all surviving plants are defeated.

Discuss this Article

Post your comments
Forgot password?
    • Man mowing the grass
      Man mowing the grass