Purging Buckthorn

©Eli Sagor

Purging buckthorn

Enw gwyddonol: Rhamnus cathartica
An uncommon hedgerow and woodland tree of central and eastern England, Purging buckthorn displays yellow-green flowers in spring, and poisonous, black berries in autumn.

Species information

Ystadegau

Height: 10-12m

Statws cadwraethol

Common.

Pryd i'w gweld

January to December

Ynghylch

Purging buckthorn, sometimes simply called 'Buckthorn', is a small, spiny tree of woodland, scrub and hedgerows on chalky soils. It is widespread, but scarce, across lowland areas of central and eastern England. Clusters of small, yellow-green flowers appear in late spring, and bunches of poisonous, black berries ripen in autumn. Purging buckthorn is the main foodplant of the Brimstone butterfly in the areas where it grows, but Alder buckthorn is used as an alternative.

Sut i'w hadnabod

Purging buckthorn is a small, spiny shrub. It displays oval, finely toothed leaves and clusters of black berries.

Dosbarthiad

Widespread, but scarce, in England and Wales.

Roeddech chi yn gwybod?

Purging buckthorn is so-named because its berries are a strong laxative ('purgative') for humans; they can also irritate the skin.

Sut y gall bobl helpu

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