Common Restharrow (Ononis repens)



Restharrow is wild flowering perennial with clusters of Pinkish Purple flowers and hairy trifoliate leaves, it is a low-growing growing plant with tough stems and roots.


Widespread in England, Restharrow is most often found locally growing in well drained Calcareous soils, on dry grassland, waste ground and tracks, but less common further North into Scotland.

Spiny Restharrow

Common Restharrow is similar to the much less common Spiny Restharrow (Ononis spinosa) which has paired spines at the leaf axils.

Restharrow is a larval food Plant of the British Common Blue Butterfly (Polyommatus icarus) and Moth the Grey Pug (Eupithecia subfuscata)

Common Restharrow (Ononis repens)

Common Restharrow (Ononis repens)

Plant Information

  • Name: Common Restharrow (Ononis repens)
  • Group: Fabaceae (pea family) Legumes
  • Type: Perennial
  • Similar appearance to: Spiny Restharrow (Ononis spinosa)
  • Flowering: July to September
  • Position: Sun, calcareous grassland, roadsides, Tracks
  • Height: around 50-70cm
  • Larval food plant: Common Blue Butterfly (Polyommatus icarus)
  • Nectar plant: Common Blue,Bees
  • Photograph: 6th July 2014
  • Location: Growing in my Garden
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