If you would like to read my Dorset nature notes about any of these featured species or sites please click on the post title

About Me

My photo

I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

01 September, 2015

Small-leaved Knotgrass: devil in the detail | Nature Notes from Dorset

There are many challenges and traps for the casual botanist like me to fall into when trying to identify plants, some species look so much like another that unless you have a super memory for detail making a record in the field can be quite difficult. This is the case with telling small-leaved (or in some books equal-leaved) knotgrass from its close cousin, common knotgrass. They have much in common at a casual glance and are both very common species.
There are, however, some little clues that make all the difference. First and foremost, small-leaved flowers a month later (July to November) that common knotgrass (June to November) so, in mid-summer, there is a time when there is only one to chose from. Next, common knotgrass is usually a bigger and more upright plant than small-leaved which tends to be a rather prostrate, even sprawling plant. Next, the flowers of common knotgrass tend towards being pink whereas small-leaved are usually more white or perhaps even greenish. 

Read more: Small-leaved Knotgrass: devil in the detail | Nature Notes from Dorset