Stellaria palustris

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaCaryophyllaceaeStellariaStellaria palustris


This perennial, rhizomatous herb is a species of damp and wet places, including pastures, grassy fens and marshes, especially in areas with standing water in winter. It is also able to colonise artificial habitats such as old peat diggings. Generally lowland, but reaching 360 m on Cronkley Fell (N.W. Yorks.).



World Distribution

Eurasian Boreo-temperate element; widely naturalised outside its native range.

© P. Shannon

Broad Habitats

Fen, marsh and swamp (not wooded)

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 8

Reaction (Ellenberg): 6

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 4


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.6

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 15.5

Annual Precipitation (mm): 793

Life form information

Height (cm): 60

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Rhizome shortly creeping

Clonality - secondary

Shortly creeping and rooting at nodes

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 389

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 73

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 1

Atlas Change Index: -0.89

Distribution information

JNCC Designations


External Species Accounts

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 (71a) Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1983)