Aristolochia lutea   Desf.

trivial name





temperature range


water requirements

soil pH



Yellow Birthwort

approx. 30-50 cm

perennial, tuberous, suberect herb

various yellowish colours with a dark throat

light shade

20-40 °C in summer, hardy to -10 °C with isolation

> 40 %

moderately humid all year round

slightly acidic

seeds (stratification period up to 2 years)

3 (1 = very easy, 5 = extremely difficult)

There's much confusion about the identity and validity of this species belonging to the pallida-complex. 

By phenotypical features it can only be held apart from pallida taking into account the limb/tube ratio, which is << 1 in lutea and ≥ 1 in pallida. Moreover, DNA analysis revealed a chromosome number of 2n = 8 for lutea and 2n = 10 for pallida and most other species in this complex.


The distribution range of A. lutea is inverted compared to the respective range of pallida yet scattered all across S- and SW-Europe surprisingly.

More research and genetic investigations are definitely needed to unravel these inconsistencies.