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Meadow Thistle is a native perennial which in time can form extensive colonies. During June and July colonies produce solitary flowers on woolly stalks that are 40-60 cm in height. Whilst the blooms aren't always abundant, they are nevertheless an important nectar source for some of our rarer species associated with marshy grasslands, such as the Marsh Fritillary buttefly.
A rather uncommon perennial herb of fens, fen-meadows, flood-pastures, bog margins and poorly-drained meadows on acid to neutral, usually peaty, soils. Habitat loss, agricultural improvements, drainage and shading from encroaching scrub have resulted in regional declines, exacerbated by the fact that it rarely sets good seed. Where colonies occur at sites where the Marsh Fritillary is present it is an imporatnt nectar source for this European Protected Species of butterfly