Vinca minor, or the lesser periwinkle, is a pretty purple-flowered plant that can be found scattered through the woods and hedgerows across Britain. It was regarded as a symbol of immortality in Medieval England and was often placed around the neck of execution victims. It was also said that it could bring love to a man and a woman if they were to eat the leaves together and was even claimed to cure nosebleeds if worn as a garland around the neck.
The less-common, greater periwinkle, was, like its smaller cousin, introduced from the continent and both plants rarely produce ripe seeds in this country. Both varieties are generally found close to civilisation.
Periwinkle Drive itself, meanwhile, is one of the more recent developments on the present eastern extremity of the city, at Chaddlewood.