Erophila glabrescens   Glabrous Whitlowgrass C DD N

Erophila glabrescens flowers Erophila glabrescens leaves

Common Whitlowgrass used be separated into three subspecies of Erophila verna but these are now three separate species: E. glabrescens, E. verna and E. majuscula. Very, very roughly E. glabrescens is mostly bald with only a few hairs, E. verna has hairs all over and E. majuscula is densely hairy.

BUT..... it isn't as simple as that because the features of the plant as a budding rosette can be quite different from the mature plant with both flowers and seeds. I have been shown the differences between these three plants by no less a person than Dr Tim Rich but my frequent subsequent examination of Whitlowgrasses hasn't always led to a definite conclusion.

In this case there were examples of Erophila glabrescens and Erophila verna growing near each other and so the difference was much clearer. Apart form being obviously much balder, E. glabrescens at this site has greener, shinier leaves too.

E. glabrescens is found throughout England, Scotland and Wales without there being any great concentration of records anywhere. It is also found throughout Ireland but less commonly (fewer botanists who know the difference maybe??).

Gravelly areas of Huntly Football Club terraces 3rd May 2008

Added on 27th April 2006, updated 8th January 2009, updated 29th March 2010