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Geranium molle

Geranium molle (*)

Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Rosids
Cladus: Eurosids II
Ordo: Geraniales

Familia: Geraniaceae
Genus: Geranium
Subgenus: G. subg. Robertium
Sectio: G. sect. Batrachioidea
Species: Geranium molle

Geranium molle L., Sp. Pl.: 682 (1753).

Geranium abortivum De Not. ex Ces., Bibliot. Ital. (Milan) 19: 349 (1838).
Geranium album Picard, Mém. Soc. Agric. Boulogne-Sur-Mer, sér. 2, 1: 129 (1837).
Geranium argenteum Lucé, Topogr. Nachr. Oesel: 236 (1823).
Geranium leiocaulon Ledeb., Fl. Ross. 1: 470 (1842).
Geranium lucanum Gasp. ex Nyman, Consp. Fl. Eur.: 138 (1878).
Geranium luganense Chenevard ex Schroet., Ber. Schweiz. Bot. Ges. 14: 121 (1904).
Geranium molle subsp. sinjaricum Al-Shehbaz & Al-Khakani, Candollea 38: 353 (1983).
Geranium pseudovillosum Schur, Enum. Pl. Transsilv.: 921 (1866).
Geranium stipulare Kunze, Flora 29: 698 (1846).

Native distribution areas:

Continental: Eurasia & Africa
Regional: Macaronesia
Albania, Algeria, Austria, Azores, Baleares, Baltic States, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canary Is., Central European Rus, Corse, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, East Aegean Is., East European Russia, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Kriti, Krym, Lebanon-Syria, Libya, Madeira, Morocco, Netherlands, North Caucasus, Northwest European Russia, Norway, Palestine, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Sardegna, Saudi Arabia, Sicilia, Sinai, South European Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Transcaucasus, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkey-in-Europe, Ukraine, Yugoslavia
Introduced into:
Alabama, Antipodean Is., Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Argentina South, Arkansas, British Columbia, California, Cape Provinces, Chatham Is., Chile Central, Chile South, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Falkland Is., Georgia, Hawaii, Iceland, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Japan, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mexico Northwest, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New South Wales, New York, New Zealand North, New Zealand South, Norfolk Is., North Carolina, Nova Scotia, Ohio, Oklahoma, Ontario, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Québec, Rhode I., South Australia, South Carolina, Taiwan, Tasmania, Tennessee, Uruguay, Utah, Vermont, Victoria, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Western Australia, Wisconsin

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Linnaeus, C. 1753. Species Plantarum. Tomus II: 682. Reference page.

Additional references

Germishuizen, G. & Meyer, N.L. (eds.) 2003. Plants of Southern Africa: an annotated checklist. Strelitzia 14: i–vi, 1–1231. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria. ISBN 1-919795-99-5. PDF (97 MB) Reference page.
Govaerts, R.H.A. 2003. World Checklist of Selected Plant Families Database in ACCESS: 1-216203. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. [unavailable for the public] Reference page.
Aedo, C. 2012. Revision of Geranium (Geraniaceae) in the New World. Systematic Botany Monographs 95: 1–550. JSTOR Reference page.
Dobignard, A. & Chatelain, C. 2012. Index synonymique de la flore d'Afrique du Nord. Volume 4: Dicotyledoneae: Fabaceae – Nymphaeaceae. Conservatoire et jardin botaniques, Genève, ISBN 978-2-8277-0126-1, 431 pp. PDF Reference page.


Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Geranium molle in Kew Science Plants of the World online. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Aug 08. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2021. Geranium molle. Published online. Accessed: Aug 08 2021. 2021. Geranium molle. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Aug 08.
Hassler, M. 2021. Geranium molle. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. 2021. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Aug 08. Reference page.
Hassler, M. 2021. World Plants. Synonymic Checklist and Distribution of the World Flora. . Geranium molle. Accessed: 08 Aug 2021.

Vernacular names
العربية: غرنوقي لين
беларуская: Герань далікатная
català: Suassana blana
čeština: kakost měkký
Cymraeg: pig yr aran
dansk: Blød storkenæb
Deutsch: Weicher Storchschnabel
eʋegbe: Pehme kurereha
English: dovefoot geranium, Dovesfoot Cranesbill
español: Geranio de los caminos
suomi: Pehmytkurjenpolvi
français: géranium mollet
Gaeilge: Crobh bog
日本語: ヤワゲフウロ
Nederlands: Zachte ooievaarsbek
polski: Bodziszek kosmaty
slovenščina: pakost mäkký
svenska: Mjuknäva
українська: Журавець м'який
中文: 柔毛牻牛兒苗

Geranium molle, the Dove's-foot Crane's-bill[1] or Dovesfoot Geranium,[2] is an annual herbaceous plant of the family Geraniaceae.


Geranium molle is a small plant reaching on average 5–30 centimetres (2.0–11.8 in) in height.[3] It is a very branched plant, quite hairy, with several ascending stems. The leaves are palmate, cut 5 to 9 times. The basal leaves are arranged in a rosette, the upper ones are sessile, rounded and hairy, with a long petiole of about 5–12 millimetres (0.20–0.47 in).[3] The flowers are pinkish-purple, 8–12 mm in diameter, with very jagged petals. It blooms from April to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite and mainly pollinated by Hymenoptera. Fruits are glabrous, usually with 6-9 transverse ridges.[3]

Geranium luganense Chenevard [4]
Geranium abortivum De Not. ex Ces.
Geranium brutium [b] micranthum N.Terracc.
Geranium brutium Gasp.
Geranium calabrum Ten.
Geranium leiocaulon Ledeb.
Geranium x luganense Chenevard
Geranium macropetalum (Boiss.) Posp.
Geranium molle [a] triviale (A.Terracc.) Gortani & M.Gortani
Geranium molle [b] caespitosum (N.Terracc.) Graebn.
Geranium molle [b] leiocaulon (Ledeb.) Graebn.
Geranium molle [B] pinguis (K.Malý) Graebn.
Geranium molle [B] stipulare (Kunze) Graebn.
Geranium molle [c] parvulum (Ten.) Graebn.
Geranium molle f. albiflorum R.Uechtr.
Geranium molle f. annuum (Schur) Gams
Geranium molle f. candidum Beck
Geranium molle f. pinguis K.Malý
Geranium molle f. stipulare (Kunze) K.Malý
Geranium molle f. subperenne (Schur) Gams
Geranium molle [frm.] glabrata A.Terracc.
Geranium molle [frm.] pygmaea A.Terracc.
Geranium molle [frm.] sepincola A.Terracc.
Geranium molle [frm.] tenuisecta A.Terracc.
Geranium molle [frm.] trivialis A.Terracc.
Geranium molle [frm.] villosissima A.Terracc.
Geranium molle [I] annuum (Schur) Graebn.
Geranium molle [I] triviale A.Terrac. ex Graebn.
Geranium molle [II] subperenne (Schur) Graebn.
Geranium molle [II] tenuisecta (A.Terracc.) Graebn.
Geranium molle [l] album (Picard) Graebn.
Geranium molle [l] suaveolens (Boenn. ex Rchb.) Graebn.
Geranium molle subf. abortiva (De Not. ex Cesati) A.Terracc.
Geranium molle subsp. brutium (Gasp.) Graebn.
Geranium molle subsp. brutium (Gasp.) P.H.Davis
Geranium molle subsp. normale A.Terracc.
Geranium molle subsp. pollinense A.Terracc.
Geranium molle subsp. sinjaricum Al-Shehbaz & Al-Khakani
Geranium molle subsp. stipulare (Kunze) Dostál
Geranium molle subsp. stipulare (Kunze) Holmboe
Geranium molle subsp. stipulare (Kunze) Soó
Geranium molle subsp. villosum (Ten.) A.Terracc.

Geranium molle subvar. macropetalum (Boiss.) Gams
Geranium molle var. abortivum (De Not. ex Ces.) Ces., Pass. & Gibelli
Geranium molle var. abortivum (De Not. ex Ces.) Nyman
Geranium molle var. album Picard
Geranium molle var. annuum Schur
Geranium molle var. arenarium A.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. brutium (Gasp.) K.Malý
Geranium molle var. caespitosum N.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. caucasicum Regel ex Woronow
Geranium molle var. corymbiferum Just.
Geranium molle var. diffusum Ten. ex A.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. elatum Ten. ex A.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. graecum A.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. grandiflorum Lange
Geranium molle var. grandiflorum Lojac.
Geranium molle var. grandiflorum Vis.
Geranium molle var. grandiflorum Viv.
Geranium molle var. lucanum Gasp. ex Nyman
Geranium molle var. macropetalum Boiss.
Geranium molle var. maioriflorum Borbás
Geranium molle var. maritimum Lojac.
Geranium molle var. minus Chevall.
Geranium molle var. montanum A.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. montanum A.Terracc. ex N.Terracc.
Geranium molle var. parvulum Ten.
Geranium molle var. stipulare (Kunze) Nyman
Geranium molle var. suaveolens Boenn. ex Rchb.
Geranium molle var. suaveolens (Boenn. ex Rchb.) Gams
Geranium molle var. subperenne Schur
Geranium molle var. supinum Fouc. & Jouss.
Geranium molle var. typicum Posp.
Geranium molle var. villosum (Ten.) Cout.
Geranium molle var. vulcanicum A.Terracc.
Geranium x oenense Borbás ex Hallier
Geranium pollinense N.Terracc. ex A.Terracc.
Geranium pseudovillosum Schur
Geranium punctatum Kanitz
Geranium pyrenaicum subsp. villosum (Ten.) Nyman
Geranium stipulare Kunze
Geranium villosum var. gracile Sennen
Geranium villosum var. villosissimum Ten.
Geranium villosum Ten.

Distribution and habitat

It is native to the Mediterranean and sub-Mediterranean areas, but has naturalized in other parts of Europe, in southwestern and central Asia and in North Africa, though it may have already been in those parts and areas, just not properly identified. It is considered an introduced species in North America, where it is known as Dovefoot Geranium or Awnless Geranium. Although non-native in parts of its range, this species poses little threat to native ecosystems.[5]

It is found in dry meadows, hedges, banks and forest edges. It prefers sunny places on sandy and relatively dry soils, at an altitude of 0–1,000 metres (0–3,281 ft) above sea level.[3]
Herbal medicine

Nicholas Culpeper in his herbal of 1652 suggested a variety of uses for G. molle, including the treatment of internal and external injuries. A note was made that the bruised leaf healed external injuries faster. A decoction in wine was said to relieve gout and other joint pains.[6]


BSBI 2007 list, Botanical Society of the British Isles, 2007, archived from the original on 2009-07-07, retrieved 2012-02-02
Pojar and MacKinnon (1994), Plants of Coastal British Columbia
Pignatti S. - Flora d'Italia – Edagricole – 1982. Vol. II, pag. 10
Synonyms from Catalogue of life
Culpeper, Nicholas (1652), The English physitian: or an astrologo-physical discourse of the vulgar herbs of this nation, London: Peter Cole

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