Common Chickweed

©Amy Lewis

Common chickweed

Scientific name: Stellaria media
Look for the small, white, star-shaped flowers of Common chickweed all year-round. Sometimes considered a 'weed', it is still a valuable food source for insects.

Species information

Statistics

Height: up to 30cm

Conservation status

Common.

When to see

January to December

About

Common chickweed is a common wildflower, found everywhere from coastal cliffs to gardens, farmyards to roadside verges. It particularly likes disturbed ground and is sometimes considered a weed. As its common name suggests, it was used as feed for chickens and cage-birds and is still popular today. Common Chickweed is an annual that produces small white flowers that can be seen all year-round.

How to identify

Common chickweed has small, star-like, white flowers, and oval, fresh green leaves. Its greatly branching stems often lie along the ground.

Distribution

Widespread.

Did you know?

The leaves of Common chickweed are sometimes eaten in salads and stir-fries.

How people can help

Our gardens are a vital resource for wildlife, providing corridors of green space between open countryside, allowing species to move about. In fact, the UK's gardens provide more space for nature than all the National Nature Reserves put together. So why not try leaving wilder areas in your garden, such as patches of buttercups in your lawn or nettles near your compost heap, to see who comes to visit? To find out more about encouraging wildlife into your garden, visit our Wild About Gardens website: a joint initiative with the RHS, there's plenty of facts and tips to get you started.