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Spotted Catchfly

Silene gallica quinquevulnera

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Caryophyllaceae (Pink)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
45 centimetres tall
Fields, gardens, wasteland.

White, 5 petals
Yellowish-white flowers, blotched pink. Similar to those of Small-flowered Catchfly (Silene gallica) but with the pink blotch marks on the petals. The petals are shallowly notched. Pollinated by bees, butterflies and moths.
The fruit is a brown, ovoid capsule. The seeds ripen from July to October.
An erect, stickily hairy annual flower with oblong, blunt-tipped leaves. Not toothed. The stems are reddish.
Other Names:
Common Campion, Five-wound Catchfly, French Catchfly.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Other Information


Silene gallica quinquevulnera, also known as five-wound catchfly or common campion, is a subspecies of Silene gallica, which is a species of flowering plant in the carnation family. Silene gallica quinquevulnera is native to Europe and has been introduced to other parts of the world as a weed. The plant is known for its small, pink or white flowers and hairy leaves. It grows well in a variety of habitats, including fields, gardens, and waste areas. Silene gallica quinquevulnera is a herbaceous plant that can grow up to 1 meter in height. It is commonly found in disturbed areas and is considered an invasive weed in some areas. The plant is toxic to livestock, and can cause vomiting and diarrhea if ingested.


Spotted Catchfly, also known as Silene gallica quinquevulnera, is a species of flowering plant that belongs to the Caryophyllaceae family. It is native to Europe and parts of Asia, and it is known for its beautiful, brightly colored flowers and its distinctive spots on the leaves.

The Spotted Catchfly is a small, herbaceous plant that grows to a height of about 10-30 cm. It has narrow, lance-shaped leaves that are green and covered in small, distinctive spots. The flowers are large and showy, ranging in color from deep red to pink, and they have five petals that are fused together at the base. The flowers are arranged in clusters at the end of the stem and bloom from June to September.

One of the most notable features of the Spotted Catchfly is its leaves, which are covered in small, dark spots that give the plant its distinctive appearance. The spots are believed to be nectar guides, which help to attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies.

The Spotted Catchfly is a hardy plant that can grow in a variety of soils, including clay, loam, and sand. It is also relatively drought-tolerant, making it an ideal choice for gardeners who are looking for a low-maintenance plant.

In terms of its cultural significance, the Spotted Catchfly has a long history of use in traditional medicine. The plant was used by indigenous peoples in Europe and Asia to treat a range of conditions, including skin wounds, infections, and digestive problems.

Today, the Spotted Catchfly is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant, and it is a popular choice for rock gardens, wildflower meadows, and other landscaping projects. With its attractive flowers and distinctive leaves, it is sure to add a pop of color to any garden.

The Spotted Catchfly is a beautiful and versatile plant that is well-suited for gardens of all sizes. Whether you are looking for a low-maintenance plant for your rock garden, or you are interested in adding a touch of traditional medicine to your landscape, the Spotted Catchfly is a great choice.

In addition to its ornamental value, the Spotted Catchfly also provides important habitat for wildlife. The plant attracts a variety of pollinators, including bees, butterflies, and moths, which are critical for the maintenance of healthy ecosystems.

It is also a food source for many species of insects and other animals. For example, the larvae of certain species of moths feed on the leaves of the Spotted Catchfly, and the plant is also a favored food source for the caterpillars of several butterfly species.

Despite its value as a habitat and food source for wildlife, the Spotted Catchfly is considered a threatened species in many parts of its native range. This is largely due to habitat loss and degradation, as well as the spread of invasive species that compete with the Spotted Catchfly for resources.

Conservation efforts are underway to protect the Spotted Catchfly and its habitat. For example, many organizations are working to restore and protect wildflower meadows and other areas where the Spotted Catchfly can grow and flourish. In addition, gardeners and landscapers can play an important role in conserving the Spotted Catchfly by planting it in their gardens and landscaping projects.

The Spotted Catchfly is not only a beautiful and versatile plant, but it is also an important component of healthy ecosystems. By planting the Spotted Catchfly in your garden, you can help to conserve this valuable species and support the health of the planet.

Aside from its ornamental and ecological value, the Spotted Catchfly is also an important source of scientific information. Scientists study the plant to better understand its biology and to learn more about the relationships between plants and pollinators.

For example, the Spotted Catchfly has been the subject of research on the evolution of flower color and patterns. Studies have shown that the distinctive spots on the leaves of the Spotted Catchfly are an important factor in attracting pollinators, and this information is helping scientists to better understand the evolution of flower coloration.

In addition, the Spotted Catchfly is also a valuable resource for plant breeders and horticulturists. Its genetic diversity, combined with its hardiness and versatility, make it a promising candidate for breeding programs aimed at developing new varieties of flowering plants.

The Spotted Catchfly is a fascinating plant that has much to offer in terms of its ornamental, ecological, and scientific value. Whether you are a gardener, a conservationist, or a scientist, the Spotted Catchfly is sure to provide you with endless opportunities for discovery and inspiration.

In conclusion, the Spotted Catchfly is a remarkable plant that is well worth exploring. Whether you are interested in its beauty, its ecological value, or its scientific significance, the Spotted Catchfly is a plant that is sure to capture your imagination and inspire you to learn more.