A perennial herb of rough grasslands, roadsides, railway embankments, hedge banks, woodland rides and clearings, open scrub and waste ground. It is a plant of moist, neutral or slightly base-rich, heavy soils, and cannot withstand much competition. Lowland.
This species was previously confused with C. muricata subsp. lamprocarpa, but a clear account of the differences was provided by Jermy et al. (1982) and it is now known to be more common in N.W. England and W. Scotland than indicated in the 1962 Atlas.
European Temperate element; widely naturalised outside its native range.
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
Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 159. Carex muricata L. aggregate (pp. 1021-1022), Carex spicata Huds. (pp. 1022-1028), Carex muricata L. sensu stricto (pp. 1028-1032), Carex divulsa Stokes (pp. 1032-1039),
, Journal of Ecology, Volume 73, p.1021-1039, (1985)
Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols,
, Königstein, (1986)