A tufted, short-lived perennial of neutral to slightly acidic soil in meadows, pastures, woodland rides and glades, mountain ledges and shingle beaches; absent from severely improved grasslands and leys. 0-1215 m (Breadalbanes, Mid Perth).
There has been no change in distribution since the 1962 Atlas. Four subspecies occur in our area: subsp. acetosa is found throughout the range of the species, subsp. biformis is restricted to sea-cliffs in W. Britain and W. Ireland, subsp. ambiguus is a rare alien in S. England and subsp. hibernicus is mapped separately.
Eurosiberian Boreo-temperate element, but widely naturalised so that distribution is now Circumpolar Boreo-temperate.
Light (Ellenberg): 7
Moisture (Ellenberg): 5
Reaction (Ellenberg): 5
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 4
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.5
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.4
Annual Precipitation (mm): 1105
Height (cm): 60
Perennation - primary
Life Form - primary
Clonality - primary
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2790
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 979
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 14
Atlas Change Index: 1.32
Weighted Changed Factor: -5
Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)
Atlas text references
1988. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1986)
1981. Docks and knotweeds of the British Isles. Botanical Society of the British Isles Handbook no. 3.
1965. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.