A perennial herb of grasslands on infertile, mainly calcareous substrates; also around rock outcrops, screes, quarry heaps and old lead workings. In many areas it is most frequent in dry, sandy, base-rich grassland on cliff-tops and dunes. Generally lowland, but reaching at least 680 m on Mt Brandon (S. Kerry).
The map suggests little appreciable change in the distribution of K. macrantha since the 1962 Atlas, where it was mapped as `all records`, but K. macrantha is known to have declined in many squares due to habitat destruction and intensification of grassland management.
Circumpolar Temperate element.
Light (Ellenberg): 8
Moisture (Ellenberg): 4
Reaction (Ellenberg): 7
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 2
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.7
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.7
Annual Precipitation (mm): 989
Height (cm): 50
Perennation - primary
Life Form - primary
Clonality - primary
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 1250
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 266
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 7
Atlas Change Index: -0.29
Atlas text references
2000. Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 212. Koeleria macrantha (Ledeb.) Schultes. Journal of Ecology. 88:709-726.
1988. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
1978. Biological Flora of the Canadian Prairie Provinces. V. Koeleria gracilis Pers. Canadian Journal of Plant Science. 58:459-466.
1965. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.