A perennial herb, occurring as a garden escape or outcast on waste ground, roadsides and banks, along railways, on pavements, walls and rubbish tips, and in quarries. Lowland.
L. purpurea was introduced into cultivation by 1648 and is a popular garden plant with several named cultivars. It was known from the wild by c. 1830 (Middlesex), and its distribution has greatly increased since the 1962 Atlas, probably due to both better recording and a genuine spread.
Native of C. & S. Italy and Sicily.
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