Scientific name Calluna vulgaris – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum heath
Common name Heather – Deergrass heath
Community code HE2E

 

HE2E: Calluna vulgaris – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum heath     HE2E: Calluna vulgaris – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum heath     HE2E map: Calluna vulgaris – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum heath

Download full pdf synopsis: HE2E

 

Vegetation

Calluna vulgaris tends to dominate this community, accompanied by a mixture of Erica cinerea, Molinia caerulea and Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum. Potentilla erecta is a constant species, while Erica tetralix is frequent and occasionally there are patches of Nardus stricta, Carex binervis, Carex panicea or Eriophorum angustifolium. The bryophyte layer is not very extensive, with Hypnum jutlandicum the mainstay, although it is frequently joined by the grey-green mounds of Racomitrium lanuginosum. Cladonia portentosa is also often met with here.

 

Ecology

This is a community of hills and mountains, occurring on the middle slopes, primarily occurring as wet heathland. Soils are rather poorly drained, acidic and infertile.

 

Sub-communities

No sub-communities have been described for this community.

 

Similar communities

Both Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum and Racomitrium lanuginosum are more frequent here than in the other communities of group HE2. In community BG2F Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum – Eriophorum angustifolium bog/heath, Trichophorum is dominant and Eriophorum angustifolium far more plentiful. Furthermore, Erica cinerea is not frequent within communities of the BG division.

 

Conservation value

Many examples of this vegetation qualify as EU Annex I habitat 4010 Wet heath. However, also included here are marginal examples of 4060 Alpine and subalpine heath. This is on average a moderately species-poor community.

 

Management

These heaths, which often form parts of commonages, may be used as rough grazing land (typically for sheep). Burning may be periodically used across large areas to suppress the dwarf shrubs and encourage grass growth. Overgrazing can also be a problem. Other threats are agricultural improvement and afforestation.