A perennial herb of hedge banks, grassland, heaths, open woods and woodland rides and margins. It is occasionally found in cliff-top grassland, sometimes as the genetically dwarf var. nana. It favours mildly acidic soils, but is also found on those that are neutral or somewhat calcareous. 0-460 m (Teesdale, Westmorland).
S. officinalis has suffered local losses in England and Ireland as a result of the loss and improvement of permanent pastures, the ploughing of fields to the edge of woods with consequent loss of the marginal flora and the shading of woodland grassland following a decline in coppicing.
European Temperate element; also in C. Asia.
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
1988. The Irish Red Data Book. 1. Vascular Plants.
1988. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
1978. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 2. 2 vols.
1980. Ancient woodland: its history, vegetation and uses in England.