Soapwort plant, Saponaria officinalis, is sometimes called Bouncing Bet. The whole plant, but particularly the root, contain large amount of saponin, a chemical that produces lather in water. Used traditionally to make a soap solution for those with sensitive skin or to wash clothes. Can be used in the bath, to shampoo hair and wash the dog. Chop the leaves or roots and simmer in water for 5 minutes, strain off and the solution is ready to use. Can be kept in fridge for several days. Useful as a remedy for dandruff and skin conditions. A companion plant. Soapwort plant is a native of central and southern Europe and is adaptable to most soils but prefers an open, sunny position. Scented flowers are pink, white or purple and occur in summer. Frost resistant but drought tender. A perennial plant, growing to 1m x 1m.