Asparagus prostratus Asparagaceae Prostrate Asparagus

Picture 1 Close up Habitat, Point Château, Sark Asparagus Beetle

Asparagus officinalis 35 kb

Description - In appearance similar to the Asparagus in your garden, except that it grows in prostrate mats. Tough stems bear ferny branches of leaves, and yellowish flowers appear in the summer, as seen in the photograph.

Habitat - Thin sandy soil, either on the calcium-rich pockets of the Common, or low down on the cliffs, where only the most intrepid botanists will find it.

Comments - Rather rare in Guernsey, although it may be under-recorded, for the reasons explained above. Plants are of separate sexes, and it appears that our southern populations are mostly female, whereas the populations in the north are all male, thus fertile berries have not been seen. Very rare in the British Isles, confined to the south-west. The larvae of the red, black and white Asparagus Beetle (Crioceris asparagi) are frequently found defoliating it.

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