An annual, usually occurring as a casual on rubbish tips or disturbed ground, mostly from bird-seed and culinary sources; also established in a few places, such as on roadsides in N.W. Essex. Lowland.
C. sativum was grown in Britain by 995 (Harvey, 1981). Although increasingly cultivated as a culinary herb, its distribution in the wild is limited by the fact that young plants are very frost-tender. It was first recorded from the wild in 1793.
Apparently native of N. Africa and W. Asia; widely naturalised in S. Europe and elsewhere.
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 201
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 2
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 3
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
Flora dels Països Catalans, II. Crucíferes-Amarantàcies,
, Barcelona, (1990)
Umbellifers of the British Isles. Botanical Society of the British Isles Handbook no. 2,
, London, (1980)
The new Oxford Book of Food Plants,
, Oxford, (1997)
Domestication of plants in the Old World, edn 3,
, Oxford, (2000)