Ragwort is an important native ‘wildflower' that helps feed pollinating insects. Common Ragwort is one of the most frequently visited flowers by Butterflies in the UK.
It is a relatively tall erect plant, with clusters of yellow daisy like flowers, flattened flower heads with finely divided leaves. It is a biennial, flowering in its 2nd year from June to November. The yellow flower heads are highly attractive to Bees, Butterflies, the Cinnabar Moth and its black and yellow Caterpillar.
Ragwort is a ‘weed’ of paddocks, pastures and waste ground; they are extremely poisonous to both horses and cattle - if ingested it can be damaging to the Liver. They do tend to avoid eating it as the taste is off-putting; thats why you will see them eating the grass but leaving the Ragwort. However, if it gets mown or cut it could end up in hay or grazing animals may still ingest the seeds. It is extremely important to pull the whole plant out including the root, removing and burning it -a Ragwort fork is a useful tool, designed to dig it up at the roots. Avoid putting it on the muck heap.
For more information on Ragwort and how to prevent spreading, please visit the links below!