Silene dioica Caryophyllaceae Red Campion

Close Up Along Lane Soldier's Fleas Smut fungus

Silene dioica 23kb

Description - A tall campion with pink or occasionally white flowers. White Campion (Silene latifolia) is very rare in Guernsey, only an occasional plant being recorded every few years yet the hybrids with that species occur every year on L'Ancresse Common and in Herm. Red Campion flowers throughout the year, but lines all the banks and cliff paths in Spring.

Habitat - Occurs nearly everywhere in both wet and dry habitats.

Comments - A local name for this plant is Soldier's Fleas. This is because of the comon black aphid which often infests the stems. The plants are either male or female. The male plants are often infested by a smut fungus Microbotryum violaceum that produces brown or violet spores from the anthers.

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