This perennial herb is widely naturalised by roadsides and paths, in the crevices of old walls, on waste ground and in hedge-bottoms. It was at one time cultivated as a medicinal plant, and most localities are near habitation. Lowland.
Fossil evidence shows that C. majus has been present in Britain since Roman times. Although it is better recorded since the 1962 Atlas, the map suggests a decline at the edges of the range.
As an archaeophyte C. majus has a Eurasian Temperate distribution; it is widely naturalised outside this range.
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Light (Ellenberg): 6
Moisture (Ellenberg): 5
Reaction (Ellenberg): 8
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 7
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.7
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 15.3
Annual Precipitation (mm): 905
Height (cm): 90
Perennation - primary
Life Form - primary
Clonality - primary
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 1662
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 220
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 9
Atlas Change Index: -0.72
Weighted Changed Factor: 17
Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)
Atlas text references
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1991)
1965. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.