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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!

04 October, 2016

Dovesfoot Cranesbill: dovesfoot underfoot



Dovesfoot cranesbill (Geranium molle) is quite a common plant but is probably often overlooked because it is a low, sprawling plant that grows in short turf and is rather trodden under foot. It has attractive pale pink flowers which are less than quarter of an inch or so across. Each of the five petals is deeply lobed which can make it appear that it has ten petals. It is a member of the geranium family so the flowers produce long, pointed seed heads once the flowers are over. The leaves are round but have deep cuts in them that make them lobed. The leaves are pale green and smooth, molle means smooth.
Most often found on lime soils, but not exclusively, it favours grassy places where the grass is not too long or dense and quite often will colonise bare patches within the grass sward. It can be a common weed of garden lawns.
Being a small plant there seems to be only a small amount of information about it available apart from a description of it. That said Culpepper apparently considered it a useful remedy for just about every ailment that one could contract! Also, by being small, there is not much to eat either.
Dovesfoot Cranesbill: dovesfoot underfoot