Reintroduction of perennial knawel Scleranthus perennis prostratus to sheep-grazed grassheath at West Stow, Suffolk, England

  • Published source details Leonard Y. (2006) Reintroduction of perennial knawel Scleranthus perennis prostratus to sheep-grazed grassheath at West Stow, Suffolk, England. Conservation Evidence, 3, 15-16.


The endemic subspecies of perennial knawel Scleranthus perennis ssp. prostratus, is found only in the Breckland area of eastern England. Due to marked recent declines, an attempt was made to reintroduce it to a site known to have historically supported the species in the county of Suffolk. A total of 45 flowering perennial knawel plants cultivated locally, were transplanted in spring to this sheep-grazed site. A year after planting all the transplants had died and no seedlings were observed. The following spring a further 84 adult plants were transplanted, but again all had died by the following year and no seedlings were present. It is thought that sheep-grazing was not intensive enough to keep surrounding vegetation short enough and to keep the ground sufficiently bare to enable successful establishment and germination.

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