A biennial or perennial herb, widespread in grassland and especially abundant in neglected, rabbit-infested or overgrazed pastures; it also grows on sand dunes, in scrub, open woods and along woodland rides, waste ground, road verges and waysides, and on rocks, screes and walls. 0-670 m (Atholl, E. Perth, and on Mangerton, S. Kerry).
The distribution of S. jacobaea is unchanged from the map in the 1962 Atlas. It is a notifiable weed, subject to statutory control, but this has clearly had little, if any, effect on its distribution or abundance.
Eurosiberian Temperate element.
Light (Ellenberg): 7
Moisture (Ellenberg): 4
Reaction (Ellenberg): 6
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 4
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.6
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.5
Annual Precipitation (mm): 1102
Height (cm): 125
Perennation - primary
Perennation - secondary
Life Form - primary
Comment on Life Form
Clonality - primary
Clonality - secondary
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2725
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 982
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 14
Atlas Change Index: 0.11
Weighted Changed Factor: 4
Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)
Atlas text references
1991. The biology of Canadian weeds. 96. Senecio jacobaea L. Canadian Journal of Plant Science. 71:127-140.
1988. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1957. Biological Flora of the British Isles. No. 62. Senecio jacobaea L. Journal of Ecology. 45:617-637.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
1992. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 3. 2 vols.
1987. The ecology of ragwort (Senecio jacobaea L.) - a review. New Zealand. Journal of Ecology. 10:67-76.