Ulex gallii   Western Gorse C DD N

Ulex gallii

If this and the Common Gorse (Ulex europaeus) flowered at the same time, we'd have difficulty in telling them apart as the distinguishing features are not well defined. However, Ulex gallii is in full flower in late summer while the Ulex europaeus is an early Spring flowering plant when there are no flowers or even buds to be seen on Ulex gallii. The other distinguishing feature, having seen them grow together on Anglesey in good numbers, is that Ulex europaeus can be quite a tall straggly shrub while Ulex gallii tends to be low growing in compact, lighter green mounds.

As its name suggests, Ulex gallii is commonest in Wales and Cornwall although its distribution extends east across counties like Cheshire and Derbyshire to the Pennines but not much beyond. It does not extend much into Scotland but is dotted here and there even as far as the north coast. In Ireland it is found in the south west, south and even the eastern coastal areas but not much in the centre of the island.

Near Cwm, North Wales 10th October 2004

Added on 31st October 2004, amended 5th February 2005, updated 18th February 2012

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