Milkwort

Polygala vulgaris

About

Common Milkwort is a low-growing, sometimes trailing flower of grasslands, particularly those of chalky soils. It blooms from May to September, the delicate flowers appearing in a variety of colours from dark-blue, through pink to white.

How to identify

Common Milkwort as narrow and pointed leaves that grow alternately up the stem. Its similar and close relative, Heath Milkwort, has leaves that are opposite each other. The small flowers appear in loose clusters at the end of the stem.

Where to find it

Widespread.

Habitats

When to find it

  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October

How can people help

The Wildlife Trusts manage many grassland habitats for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife. Careful grazing with traditional breeds, hay-cutting at the right time and scrub clearance are just some of the ways these fragile habitats are kept in good condition - supporting wildflowers like Common Milkwort and, in turn, invertebrates and the larger animals that prey on them. By volunteering for your local Trust you can help too, and you'll make new friends and learn new skills along the way.

Species information

Common name
Milkwort
Latin name
Polygala vulgaris
Category
Wildflowers
Statistics
Height: up to 30cm
Conservation status
Common.