The descriptive text, below the map, is from the Cornish Red Data Book (2009). The map on this web page depicts the organisms distribution and shows the records made pre-2000 and those made since.
Range & Status
Native; a low creeping European Temperate shrub. In Britain, it occurs on coastal sites in Cornwall and Pembrokeshire, in limestone grassland in Brecon and one upland locality in Merionethshire. It may still occur rarely in south-eastern England and East Anglia.
In Cornwall it is confined to two discrete areas: along a stretch of the north coast between Hell' s Mouth (SW64) and Cligga Head near Perranporth (SW75), and on the west coast of The Lizard (SW61), with an outlier near Black Head (SW71). It has been lost from all inland sites in Cornwall. In total it has been recorded from 49 1km squares but only 28 since 1999.
Habitat & Ecology
Along the very exposed north coast of Cornwall, it can be found growing as a prostrate mat in dwarf maritime heaths on thin stony, soils, overlying Lower Devonian slaty shales (killas). On The Lizard it occurs in strongly maritime conditions on shallow soils over serpentine and schists, often in pockets of soil in rock outcrops. On the west coast it extends into maritime heaths.
It is relatively unthreatened, apart from cliff-falls and heath fires.
Much of the southern part of the Lizard Peninsula is SSSI and managed by the National Trust and Natural England, and many of the sites on the north Cornish coast are owned and managed by the National Trust.
I.J. Bennallick, S. Board, C.N. French, P.A. Gainey, C. Neil, R. Parslow, A. Spalding and P.E. Tompsett. eds. 2009. Red Data Book for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. 2nd Edition.Croceago Press.
The Cornish Red Data Book Project was led by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Federation for Biological Recorders (CISFBR). The full text and species accounts (minus the maps) are available on the CISFBR website.