An overwintering annual of disturbed or trampled grasslands, coastal cliff-slopes, roadside verges, arable fields, manure heaps, walls, pavement cracks, gardens and waste places. It is intolerant of grazing but an invasive weed of bare ground. It is more frequent in coastal habitats than S. asper but less frequent in the uplands. 0-365 m (Kisdon, N.W. Yorks.).
There has been no discernible change in the distribution of S. oleraceus since the 1962 Atlas.
European Southern-temperate element, but widely naturalised so that distribution is now Circumpolar Southern-temperate.
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. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
1984. The biology of Canadian weeds. 63. Sonchus asper (L.) Hill and S. oleraceus L. Canadian Journal of Plant Science. 64:731-744.
1948. Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 22. Sonchus L. genus (pp. 203), Sonchus oleraceus L. emend Gouan (pp. 204-216), Sonchus asper (L.) Hill (pp. 216-223). Journal of Ecology. 36:203-223.
1992. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 3. 2 vols.