Saturday, 4 August 2012


Ragwort seems to get a bad press - ramped up by the British Horse Society - and it is toxic if eaten in large amounts by horses, but only if they eat kilos of the stuff. And as I'm not allowed to keep livestock on my plot this doesn't concern me unduly. In fact there are a lot of myths about ragwort as pointed out on this site. Ragwort is not toxic if handled by humans. Bees and hoverflies enjoy the flowers of this native wildflower and there are many other species which require its nectar and pollen. It is often a major and important resource for many declining species - there are at least thirty species of invertebrates which are totally dependent on ragwort as a food source, including the caterpillar of the funky cinnabar moth. So be nice to ragwort.


Anonymous said...

Nice site Simon. Agree about ragwort - saw a lovely six spot burnet on some at the coast last week.
It's all in flower at the mo' at my allotment but as long as it doesn't run riot a little is ok.

Simon said...

Thanks for complimenting my blog - and the ragwort - apparently at least 30 species of invertebrates depend on it, right now much of mine is being devoured by cinnabar moth caterpillars.