Phylum: Magnoliophyta - Class: Equisetopsida - Order: Dipsacales - Family: Caprifoliaceae
This perennial wildflower grows up to 0.5m in height and has a basal rosette of unlobed lanceolate leaves. The leaves are green and often carry purplish blotches. Its blue-mauve (occasionally pink) flowers grow in densely-packed compound heads 2 to 3 cm across. Individual florets are four sided and deeply funnelled.
Devil's-bit Scabious is widespread and common throughout the UK and Ireland; it occurs also in western and central mainland Europe, and its range extends eastwards into parts of Asia.
This member of the Honeysuckle family has a preference for damp places; it is frequently found in wet meadows and near rivers and streams.
Flowering occurs from June to October.
Succisa pratensis is the foodplant of caterpillars of Euphydryas aurinia, the Marsh Fritillary butterfly.
Devil's-bit Scabious is usually a little taller and has much rounder flower heads than Sheep's-bit Jasione montana, with which it is often confused. Sheep's-bit (sometimes referred to as Sheep's-bit Scabious) is a member of the bellflower family Campanulaceae.
The pictures shown on this page were taken in Wales in July and August.
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