Geranium purpureum

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaGeraniaceaeGeraniumGeranium purpureum


Subspecies purpureum is an upright annual in stony or rocky places near the sea, on sheltered cliffs, disused railway lines, and particularly by roads and fields on the earth-and-stone sides of Cornish hedge banks. Subsp. forsteri is a prostrate plant of stabilised areas at the top of shingle beaches. Lowland.



World Distribution

Mediterranean-Atlantic element.

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 3

Reaction (Ellenberg): 6

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 3


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 1

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 5.7

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 16.1

Annual Precipitation (mm): 962

Life form information

Height (cm): 50

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary

Therophyte (annual land plant)



Clonality - primary

Little or no vegetative spread

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 52

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 4

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 11

Atlas Change Index: 0.22

Distribution information

JNCC Designations


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

Atlas (94b)
Atlas Supp (17a
Baker HG
1955.  Geranium purpureum Vill. and G. robertianum L. in the British Flora: I. Geranium purpureum. Watsonia. 3:160-167.
Curtis TGF, McGough HN
1988.  The Irish Red Data Book. 1. Vascular Plants.
FitzGerald R
1990.  Rare Plant Survey of South-West England. Vol. 3. Cornwall. CSD Report, no. 1060.
French CN, Murphy RJ, Atkinson MGC
1999.  Flora of Cornwall.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Meusel H, Jäger E, Rauschert S, Weinert E
1978.  Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 2. 2 vols.
O`Mahony (1985)
Wigginton MJ
1999.  British Red Data Books. 1. Vascular plants, edn 3.