An annual weed of cornfields or fallow ground on the most infertile, acidic, sandy soils. It was particularly associated with soils over Lower Greensand. Lowland.
Although widely scattered in the 18th and 19th centuries, A. minima was probably persistent only in E. & S.E. England. It declined from the start of the 20th century and by 1953 was limited to about twelve localities. Except for a deliberate introduction in E. Suffolk, it has not been recorded since 1971. Its decline was due to the increased use of fertilisers and herbicides, and improved seed screening methods.
As an archaeophyte A. minima has a European Temperate distribution.
Light (Ellenberg): 7
Moisture (Ellenberg): 4
Reaction (Ellenberg): 3
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 3
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.6
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 16.1
Annual Precipitation (mm): 685
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 83
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 0
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 0
Atlas Change Index: -3.72
PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.
Atlas text references
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
1992. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 3. 2 vols.