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Large-leaved avens – Geum macrophyllum

On a recent walk Sue, a member of the Ecology Group, came across large -leaved Avens (Geum Macrophyllum) in Wood 2: map ref. SK3263483054. There are about 60-70 plants and as far anyone can tell there are no previous records of them within Ecclesall Woods. They are a rare alien from the USA and thought to have arrived in South Yorkshire in 2016. They are related to our native wood avens aka herb bennett (Geum urbanum) and if they follow their habits they will spread very quickly.

Here is a description from ‘Wild Flowers of the Porter Valley’ written and published by Ken Balkow.

“The¬†plant comes from N. America and was introduced to Britain in the early 19th century, apparently inadvertently. It is rather similar to our native wood avens. Geum urbanum, but slightly larger in all its parts. In the wild it has only been recorded in a few places… …[including] growing on the slope above Forge Dam where it was recently discovered by Ambroise Baker. It was flowering in early June and one distinguishing feature compared with G. urbabum is that the petals appear to be slightly notched.”