BLOODY CRANE'S-BILL

Geranium sanguineum

Crane's-bill (Geranium) Family [Geraniaceae]  

month8May month8jun month8june month8jul month8july month8Aug

status
statusZnative
flower
flower8purple
morph
morph8actino
petals
petalsZ5
stem
stem8round

10th June 2009, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
A perennial with short rhizomes which is either erect to procumbent, growing to 40cm.


10th June 2009, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Petals usually a bright purplish-red with just a slight dip (not a sharp nick) in the centre-end.


31st May 2005, Leeds & Liverpool canal, Barrowford. Photo: © RWD
The leaves have between 5 and 7 deeply cut lobes; the lobes themselves also being lobed although not as deeply. The flowers a deep bloody purple.


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
The flower stalks are in two parts, and upper attached to the flower (the pedicel) and the lower (peduncle). The pedicel is ≤2.5cm long.


31st May 2007, North Walney Island, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Despite being on Walney Island this specimen is not the 'Walney Pink' variety speciality of Walney Island.


31st May 2005, Leeds & Liverpool canal, Barrowford. Photo: © RWD
The leaves and un-opened buds are hairy, but never glandular hairy.


31st May 2005, Leeds & Liverpool canal, Barrowford. Photo: © RWD
The flowers have 5 petals overlapping on one edge only, some flowers being clockwise.


31st May 2005, Leeds & Liverpool canal, Barrowford. Photo: © RWD
Whilst others are anti-clockwise. Your Author doesn't know if this is significant, or not. The petals have darker purple prominent veins.


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Whilst some specimens do not have overlapping petals. Your Author notes that the bloody colouring reverts to blue on damage.


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
The sepals are lanceolate, not narrow. They are tipped by a short spike. Hairs sparse and not glandular (no bobble at the end).


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
When fruiting a long thing extends from the centre. There are 4 seeds, in pairs (bottom fruiting flower).


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
At the end of the extended mericarp are the remains of the 5-pronged style.


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
The 4 seeds are more easily seen here, at the foot of the central column (mericarp).


10th June 2009, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Between 5 and 7 lobes to a leaf, each lobe may itself be less-deeply cut and therefore also lobed (sub-lobes). The drooping flower bud on the left shows where pedicel meets peduncle (at a bract).


31st Aug 2015, extinct rly, Smardale, Newbiggin, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
Shorter hairs on leaves.


3rd June 2010, Walney Island, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
There are 5 pink styles in the centre; they start off all bunched up like this. And nominally twice as many stamens with azure anthers.



(POSSIBLY) WALNEY GERANIUM

(Geranium sanguineum var. striatum)
3rd June 2010, Walney Island, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
A possible contender for Walney Geranium, a variety of Bloody Crane's-bill which grows wild only on Walney. It is much paler pink with white as well. The veins are much more prominently coloured.


3rd June 2010, Walney Island, Cumbria. Photo: © RWD
The style has splayed out displaying its 5 prongs. The anthers have dropped off the filaments. The petals have also dropped off; this flower is in the process of producing its fruit.


Easily confused with : the sterile hybrid Purple Crane's-bill (Geranium × magnificum) [being a hybrid between two Geraniums which are not found growing wild in the UK - (Geranium ibericum with (Geranium platypetalum)]. Purple Crane's-bill grows to 75cm, with the leaves rarely lobed to greater than 4/5 of the way to the base, and has both hairs with glands atop and non-glandular hairs which are equally abundant on most parts of the plant and the petals can be marginally larger at up to 24mm, but never less than about 20mm (whereas on Bloody Crane's-bill the range is 14-22mm).

Some similarities to : Cut-Leaved Crane's-bill (Geranium dissectum) but, although also pink, it has much smaller petals only 4.5 - 6mm.

No relation to : the tree Bloody Whitebeam (Sorbus vexans)

On Walney Island just off Barrow-in-Furness there is a variety of Bloody Crane's-bill which only grows there in the wild, called Walney Geranium aka Walney Pink Geranium (Geranium sanguineum var. striatum) (formerly called Geranium sanguineum var. lancastriense) which is a either totally white or a much paler pink to white with bright-pink veins on the petals. It is a rare dwarf plant, but seemingly can be bought as seed for garden planting. Your Author has looked for this many times, but never knowingly seen one. There are other normal geraniums on Walney Island just to confuse.


  Geranium sanguineum  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Geraniaceae  

Distribution
family8Cranesbill family8Geranium family8Geraniaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8geranium
Geranium
(Crane's-bills)

BLOODY CRANE'S-BILL

Geranium sanguineum

Crane's-bill (Geranium) Family [Geraniaceae]  

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