Lolium perenne

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaPoaceaeLoliumLolium perenne


L. perenne is predominantly a species of improved lowland pasture, leys, and hay meadows, but is found widely in other habitats, including downland, rush-pasture, inundated grasslands, amenity grassland and road verges; also in open ruderal habitats. It favours fertile, heavy, neutral soils, but is also found on those which are mildly acidic or basic. 0-570 m (Alston Moor, Cumberland).



World Distribution

European Southern-temperate element; widely naturalised outside its native range.

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 8

Moisture (Ellenberg): 5

Reaction (Ellenberg): 6

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 6

Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.6

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.5

Annual Precipitation (mm): 1096

Height (cm): 50

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Tussock-forming graminoid, may slowly spread

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2743

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 964

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 14

Atlas Change Index: -0.29

Weighted Changed Factor: -11

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


JNCC Designations


Atlas text references

Atlas (375d)
Beddows AR
1967.  Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 107. Lolium perenne L. Journal of Ecology. 55:567-587.
Grime JP, Hodgson JG, Hunt R
1988.  Comparative Plant Ecology.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Meusel H, Jäger E, Weinert E
1965.  Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.