Atropa belladonna

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaSolanaceaeAtropaAtropa belladonna


A robust rhizomatous perennial herb of dry disturbed ground, field margins, hedgerows and open woodland. It is native only on calcareous soils, particularly those overlying chalk, but it occurs on a wider range of soils as an alien, where it is often a relic of cultivation as a medicinal herb. Reproduction is mainly by bird-distributed seed. Lowland.



World Distribution

European Temperate element.

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 5

Moisture (Ellenberg): 4

Reaction (Ellenberg): 8

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 6

Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.6

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 16.1

Annual Precipitation (mm): 717

Height (cm): 150

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Little or no vegetative spread

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 414

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 0

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 0

Atlas Change Index: -0.33

JNCC Designations


Atlas text references

Atlas (219b)
Butcher RW
1947.  Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 18. Atropa belladonna L. Journal of Ecology. 34:345-353.
Meusel H, Jäger E, Rauschert S, Weinert E
1978.  Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 2. 2 vols.