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Species Notebook:

  • Birdsfoot Trefoil

    Common Birds-foot Trefoil: eggs and bacon

    Post date: Tuesday, 21 June, 2016 - 21:17

    Common bird's-foot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus) must surely be one of our most familiar flowers as it can be found just about anywhere from the coastal cliffs to hedgerows, from woodland to grassland. Apart from very acid soils you can find it in almost habitat.

    It is a member of the pea family with the classic 'vetch' shaped flower which can have orange or red on them during the early stages before becoming pure yellow. It is generally a low-growing, almost sprawling, plant.  It is a very popular plant with insects and is the food plant for several species of moth and butterfly. The common name 'bird's foot' comes from the shape of the seed heads that form once the flower has gone over. It looks just like the foot of a small bird.  

    Sometimes called 'eggs and bacon' although I have no idea why as it does not look like an egg and there is no trace of any bacon. I have also known it to be called Tom Thumb and even granny's toe-nails! 


     

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