Silene vulgaris

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaCaryophyllaceaeSileneSilene vulgaris


S. vulgaris is a perennial herb found in a wide range of soils in open and grassy habitats, including cultivated and abandoned arable fields, rough pasture, roadside verges, quarries, gravel-pits, railway banks, walls and waste places. It is able to tolerate partial shade and may grow in open woodland and on hedge banks. 0-360 m (Shap Summit, Westmorland).



World Distribution

Eurasian Southern-temperate element, but naturalised in N. America so distribution is now Circumpolar Southern-temperate.

© M. Cotterill, IWNHAS

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 4

Reaction (Ellenberg): 8

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 5


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.7

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 15.3

Annual Precipitation (mm): 897

Life form information

Height (cm): 80

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Little or no vegetative spread

Distribution information

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 1710

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 280

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 8

Atlas Change Index: -1.26

Weighted Changed Factor: -36

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 (62a)
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1986)
Marsden-Jones EM, Turrill WB
1957.  The Bladder Campions.