SNOW-IN-SUMMER

Cerastium tomentosum

Carnation & Campion (Pink) Family [Caryophyllaceae]

month8may month8jun month8june month8jul month8july month8aug

status
statusZneophyte
flower
flower8white
inner
inner8cream
inner
inner8yellow
morph
morph8actino
petals
petalsZ5
petals
petalsZcleft petalsZcut
stem
stem8round

21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Forms mats as does Field Mouse-Ear.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Flower stalks longer and more upright than the similar Field Mouse-Ear. Petals recurved backwards in a graceful arch.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Sepals half as long as the petals.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Petals deeply cut. Flowers have 10 stamens and five stigmas.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Anthers white with cream-coloured pollen.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Petals narrower than those of Field Mouse-Ear; creased in the trumpet throat.


20th Aug 2014, dune slacks, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
A young seedling. So covered in matted dense white hairs as to appear almost white with a hint of green. Beneath the hairs the leaves are green, as can be seen on the lower leaf where the hairs have come off. Leaves in opposite pairs, arranged in quadrature.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Leaves are longer and broader than those of Field Mouse-Ear.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Fine felted mat of off-white hairs.


21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Branched.


PROBABLY ANOTHER VARIETY

21st May 2012, alleyway, Alt Rifle Range, Freshfields, Sefton Coast. Photo: © RWD
Probably one of the many possible varieties or cultivars. The sepal cups are wider and shorter than half the length of the petals.


Not to be semantically confused with : Snowberry (), Snowdrop (Galanthus nivalis), Glory-of-the-Snow (Chinodoxa forbesii), Spring Snowflake (Leucojum vernum) or Summer Snowflake (Leucojum aestivum) and all of these flowers various other species [which are all plants with similar names belonging to disparate Families]

Some similarities to : Field Mouse-Ear (Cerastium arvense) in that it also forms mats and has large (12-20mm across) white flowers but is less common than Snow-in-Summer and the stems and leaves are not almost white with matted hairs, the flower stalks shorter and floppier, petals are wider and leaves narrower.

Slight resemblance to : Pink Purslane (Claytonia sibirica) which also has 5 petals which are nicked, but the nicks are not as deep, they are whitish-pink rather than white, and the leaves are totally different [which belongs to the Blinks family (Montiaceae)]

Uniquely identifiable characteristics

Distinguishing Feature :

It was introduced into the UK from Italy in 1648 but only recorded in the wild from 1915. There are many cultivars and variations present in the UK and it is a part of a difficult and complex taxa. Similar species such as (Cerastium decalvams) and (Cerastium biebersteinii) have in the past been mis-identified as Snow-in-Summer. There is no guarantee that your Author has not done likewise...

It is grown in gardens and escapes onto banks and walls and also onto sand-dunes


  Cerastium tomentosum  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Caryophyllaceae  

Distribution
 family8Carnation & Campion (Pink) family8Caryophyllaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8Cerastium
Cerastium
(Mouse-Ears)

SNOW-IN-SUMMER

Cerastium tomentosum

Carnation & Campion (Pink) Family [Caryophyllaceae]