Greater Knapweed (Centaurea scabiosa) is a thistle type plant that is often found on chalk lands, roadsides and sometimes cliff tops.
The large, bright pink flowers are actually made up of many smaller florets and around the edge of the flowers are a large start like ray of florets with smaller, more dense florets in the middle. The thistle like flower heard is similar to that of the Common Knapweed but with larger flower heads.
It is on bloom between June to September and is a favourite of butterflies including Common Blues, Marbled Whites and Meadow Browns. Greater Knapweed is a medium sized plant that is found in a variety of grasslands on dry and calcareous soils but is not found in intensely managed meadows and pastures.
Similar to other memebrs of the Daisy family, Greater Knapweed is a very important source of food for a wide variety of insects inclduing bees as well as the butterflies.
Height: 30 – 60cm
Flowering Time: July to Sept
Preferred Conditions: Can be found in a variety of dry calcareous soil and prefers meadows and pastures but may sometimes be found on the edge of woodlands and scrub lands.