Meet The Campions

Red Campion Silene dioica
Red Campion Silene dioica
White Campion Silene latifolia
White Campion Silene latifolia

These hairy, five-petalled perennials can be found in hedgerows, on woodland margins, cultivated ground, roadside verges and waste ground. A native species it is common and widespread, and can be seen flowering from May to August.

Pink Campion Silene x hampeana
Pink Campion Silene x hampeana

The Pink Campion above is a hybrid of the White Campion (Silene latifolia) and the Red Campion (Silene dioica), which commonly occur where the two parent plants occur.

And as a comparison, see the Sea Campion below, which prefers coastal habitats.

Sea Campion Silene uniflora
Sea Campion Silene uniflora

June 2012, local woodland margins and field margins, Staffordshire, except for Sea Campion, Llandudno, Wales. © Pete Hillman 2012.

Snow-in-summer

Cerastium tomentosum

Snow-in-summer Cerastium tomentosum

This is one plant that always reminds me of living back home with my parents, for they had a great clump of it growing over a wall in their back garden. I remember as a boy tending the border it was growing in, removing any weeds, and gently turning the soil with a small fork. I love the silver foliage which remains so all year round, and the white flowers which are in abundance from May to August, attracting all kinds of insects. It was only natural that I grow it in my own garden.

Snow-in-summer Cerastium tomentosum

Naturalised throughout the British Isles. Found on roadside verges, dunes and waste ground. Flourishes well in the garden at the front of raised beds or borders, in full sunshine. Also ideal in rock gardens, and gives good ground colour. Introduced in 1648, common and widespread.

Snow-in-summer Cerastium tomentosum

June 2012, rear garden, Staffordshire. Nikon Coolpix P500. © Pete Hillman 2012.

Sea Campion

Silene uniflora

Sea Campion (Silene uniflora)

The Sea Campion is a loose, scrambling plant which produces distinct white flowers with conspicuously veined sepals joined into an inflated tube. The leaves are green, hairless and waxy, and some remain green throughout the winter.

Sea Campion (Silene uniflora)

It flowers March to October. Discovered in coastal habitats such as shingle banks, sand dunes and cliffs, and also inland on high mountains. Widespread and locally common, the Sea Campion varies its growth form according to its environment.


June 2012, Llandudno, Wales. Nikon Coolpix P500. © Pete Hillman 2012.