A perennial creeping herb of woodland, hedgerows, banks, and other moist, usually shaded, habitats; also in rough montane grassland, grikes in limestone pavement, Vaccinium communities, bryophyte-rich block screes, and rock ledges. It grows on both calcareous and non-calcareous soils, though only those which are moisture-retentive. It is one of the few species able to survive the deep shade of conifer plantations. 0-1160 m (Ben Lawers, Mid Perth).
The distribution of O. acetosella has little changed since the 1962 Atlas, where it was mapped as `all records`. The bulk of the losses in E. England probably occurred before 1950.
Eurasian Boreo-temperate element.
Light (Ellenberg): 4
Moisture (Ellenberg): 6
Reaction (Ellenberg): 4
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 4
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.4
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.4
Annual Precipitation (mm): 1138
Height (cm): 10
Perennation - primary
Life Form - primary
Clonality - primary
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2393
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 791
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 2
Atlas Change Index: -0.74
Weighted Changed Factor: -11
Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)
Atlas text references
1988. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
1978. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 2. 2 vols.
1978. Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 141. Oxalis acetosella L. Journal of Ecology. 66:669-693.
1958. Oxalis in the British Isles. Watsonia. 4:51-69.