Scientific name Molinia caerulea – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum bog/heath
Common name Purple Moor-grass – Deergrass bog/heath
Community code HE4A

 

HE4A: Molinia caerulea – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum bog/heath     HE4A: Molinia caerulea – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum bog/heath     HE4A map: Molinia caerulea – Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum bog/heath

Download full pdf synopsis: HE4A

 

Vegetation

The main species in this community are Molinia caerulea, Calluna vulgaris and Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum, but overall plant cover is not that high. Erica tetralix and Potentilla erecta are the other constants in the field layer. Frequently one will also find here Narthecium ossifragum, Carex panicea, Erica cinerea, Eriophorum angustifolium and Schoenus nigricans. The bryophyte layer is pretty sparse, consisting mostly of Racomitrium lanuginosum, Pleurozia purpurea and Hypnum jutlandicum. Sphagnum capillifolium, Sphagnum tenellum and Sphagnum papillosum are each only occasional and no more frequent than the disturbance indicator Sphagnum compactum.

 

Ecology

This community occurs on the lower to middle slopes of hills and mountains on wet, acidic and infertile peaty soils. It is a slightly degraded version of wet heath and lowland bog.

 

Sub-communities

No sub-communities have been described for this community.

 

Similar communities

Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum is more frequent here than in the other communities within the HE4 Molinia caerulea – Polygala serpyllifolia group or the degraded bogs of BG1C Schoenus nigricans – Eriophorum angustifolium bog community, which also usually supports Rhynchospora alba. Schoenus nigricans is less frequent and abundant in the present community than in any of the three main communities where it occurs: BG1C, BG2D and HE4C.

 

Conservation value

This is on average a fairly species-poor peatland community. Most examples will qualify as either EU HD Annex I habitat 4010 Wet heath or habitat 7130 Blanket bog (active)*.

 

Management

This vegetation is degraded to some degree, typically as a result of turf-cutting and the associated drainage, and also by overgrazing and trampling from livestock (sheep or cattle). Other threats include afforestation and burning.