A rhizomatous perennial herb of hedges, woodland margins, coarse scrubby grassland, coastal cliffs and sand dunes, typically on dry calcareous soils. It is also found on waste ground, old quarries, and railway-sides. 0-395 m (W. Perth).
There is no evidence of a change in the distribution of C. vulgare in S. England since the 1962 Atlas (where it was mapped as `all records`), although it is apparently decreasing in the northern half of its British range. Its decline in Cumbria has been noted by Halliday (1997).
Circumpolar Temperate element, with a disjunct distribution.
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