Lycopodium clavatum

Tracheophyta LycopodiopsidaLycopodiaceaeLycopodiumLycopodium clavatum


A prostrate, evergreen perennial herb of heaths, moors and mountains. It is often frequent on base-rich micaceous soils, but also occurs on more acidic Calluna heath and Nardus grassland. Propagation is mostly vegetative, but spores can colonise new sites, particularly the disturbed soil of roadside embankments and quarries. Lowland to 840 m in Atholl (E. Perth).



World Distribution

Circumpolar Boreo-temperate element.

Broad Habitats

Dwarf shrub heath (cover of dwarf shrubs at least 25%)

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 5

Reaction (Ellenberg): 1

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 2


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 2.4

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 13.3

Annual Precipitation (mm): 1368

Life form information

Height (cm): 15

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Extensively creeping and rooting at nodes

Distribution information

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 948

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 81

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 0

Atlas Change Index: -0.52

Weighted Changed Factor: 15

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


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 (1d)
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1972)
Bangerter EB, Cannon JFM, Jermy AC
1978.  Ferns and their allies. The Island of Mull: a survey of its flora and environment. :12.1-12.7.
Page CN
1997.  The ferns of Britain and Ireland, edn 2.