Cerastium glomeratum, The Sticky Mouse Ear

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)Sticky Mouse Ear flowers from April to September in fields and meadows. It is often found on farmland.

It is very similar to the closely related Common Mouse Ear, Cerastium fontanum so here are a few differences to look out for.

Sticky Mouse Ear is also known as Clustered Mouse Ear, The flowers  are clustered together in a tight flower head. Common Mouse Ear flowers are more spread out.

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)The green sepals of Sticky Mouse Ear are sometimes tipped with red. The entire plant is covered with fine hairs and at the tip of each hair is a small gland that secretes a sticky substance that gives the whole plant a slightly sticky feel.

Characteristically the hairs on the sepals extend beyond the tips of the sepals, with Common Mouse Ear they don’t.

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)The flower of Sticky Mouse Ear has five sepals and five, notched, white petals. It has ten stamens and five styles. It is quite a small flower, each petal being about 4mm long.

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)The leaves are oval, 10 -20 mm long and grow in opposite pairs. They are hairy on both sides.

Sticky Mouse Ear leaves (Cerastium glomeratum) Sticky Mouse Ear leaves (Cerastium glomeratum)   Sticky Mouse Ear leaves (Cerastium glomeratum)   Sticky Mouse Ear leaves (Cerastium glomeratum)

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)The plant can reach about 45 cm (18 inches) in height.

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)The seeds are contained in a papery fruit capsule that is about 10mm long.

Sticky Mouse Ear fruit capsule (Cerastium glomeratum)

Sticky Mouse Ear fruit capsule (Cerastium glomeratum)As the fruit ripens the end opens to release the seeds. The opening terminates in ten small teeth.

Sticky Mouse Ear fruit capsule (Cerastium glomeratum)

Sticky Mouse Ear fruit capsule (Cerastium glomeratum)Sticky Mouse Ear is a member of the Pink or Carnation family, a family that also includes the Campions. I can see several similarities between this and the hairy Red Campion. It is native to the UK and Europe but it is present on most continents as an introduced species.

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)Taxonomy:

Kingdom: Plantae

Order: Caryophyllales

Family: Caryophyllaceae

Genus: Cerastium

Species: Cerastium glomeratum

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)

Sticky Mouse Ear (Cerastium glomeratum)Back to white Wildflowers

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