West Highland Flora

Sea Mouse-ear


Cerastium diffusum

Alternative names: Dark Green Mouse-ear, Cerastium atrovirens

Cerastium diffusum
Flower 7 mm across

Photo Carl Farmer
24 June 2003 Glenbrittle, Skye

Occasional on sand or stony ground near the sea.

Flower diameter c 5-7 mm

ID: Bracts of inflorescence branches entirely green and leaflike, without pale edges.  Stamens 4-5, petals often 4 (examine several flowers).  Petals equal to or shorter than sepals.  Stems and sepals covered with glandular hairs, but hairs not projecting beyond sepal tip. 

Other features: Annual.  Majority of flowers have 4 sepals, petals, stamens and styles, but some have 5.  Other Skye Mouse-ear species have 5 petals and sepals except in malformed flowers.  Sepals have whitish-transparent edges and tips, difficult to see against petals.  Stems often reddish

 

Cerastium diffusum

Photo Carl Farmer
24 June 2003 Glenbrittle, Skye

 

Cerastium diffusum
Capsule 9 mm long

Photo Carl Farmer
24 June 2003 Glenbrittle, Skye

  Cerastium diffusum

Photo Carl Farmer
24 June 2003 Glenbrittle, Skye

 

Above: gland-tipped hairs
clearly visible

Left: fruit-capsule; this one
was atypically long, and looks
even longer owing to the
"invisible" sepal-tips


Cerastium diffusum

Photo Carl Farmer
27 Apr 2003 Handa Island
 

In this picture the white edges and tips of the sepals are almost impossible to see against the white petals.


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