by Stephen Mifsud
   27 May 2020      ()
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Erodium moschatum   (Musk Stork's Bill)

Erodium moschatum   (GERANIACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands at or after year 2000.

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Profile Date Mar-2006 (last update: 12-Jan-2019)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (Mar-2006) Erodium moschatum retrieved from on 2020-May-27

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Erodium moschatum (L.) L'Héritier
Published in (L.) L'Hér. in Aiton, Hort. Kew. 2: 414 (1789)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

No Main Synonyms
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life ]

Plant Family :

Geraniaceae Juss. (The Geranium Family)
14 species from the Geraniaceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Musk Stork's Bill, Musk Clover, White-stemmed filaree

Maltese name(s) :

Ħaxixa tal-Misk

Status for Malta :

Indigenous. Present on the Maltese islands before man

Frequency :

Very Common     Common     Frequent     Scarce     Rare     Very rare     Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: THEROPHYTE (annuals)
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection [link]:

Not Protected by Law (LN200/2011 or LN311/2006)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :


Colour of Flowers:

Pink or Violet

Species Description and Distribution

Habitat in Europe:

Cultivated ground and waste places.

Preferred habitat in Malta:

Fields, road margins, country lanes, waste places.

Botanical Description:

Annual or biennial, smelling of musk. Stems 10-50 cm, hispid with usually deflexed hairs, dense above, sparse below. Leaves up to 20 cm, oblong-lanceolate, pinnate almost throughout their length, without intercalary leaflets; leaflets ovate, dentate, serrate or somewhat pinnatifid, the lower ones remote. Umbels with 5-12 flowers; bracts several, broadly ovate, subacute, subglabrous, pale brown. Sepals 6-9 mm; petals c. 15 mm, violet or purple. Mericarps 5-6 mm, with patent, brown or white hairs; apical pits very wide, glandular, with a wide, deep furrow at the base. Beak 20-45 mm.

Chromosome number:


Distributional range:

S. & W. Europe frequently naturalized or casual elsewhere.

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):

Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):

Albania, the Azores, the Balaeric Islands, Britain (excl. Northern Ireland and Channel islands), Corse, Crete, France (incl. Monaco and Channel Islands but excluding Corse), Greece, the Netherlands, Spain (incl. Andorra but excl. the Balaerics), Italy (excl. Sicily and Sardignia), ex-Jugoslavia, Portugal, Sardinia, Sicily and/or Malta, Turkey (European part), Introduced in  Austria and Liechtenstein, Belgium, Czeck Republic and Slovakia, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland, Hungary

Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(Euro+Med Checklist, 2017) - Country codes

AE Ag Al Au(A) Az(G M S T) Be Bl dBr Ca(C F G H P T) Co Cr Ct Cy Eg Ga Gr dHb(E) Ho Hs(S) IJ It Li LS Lu Ma Md(D M P) Sa Si(M S) Sn Tn Tu(A E) Uk(K) [By Cs Fe Ge He Hu No Sl]

Images (8 images)
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-0.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-1.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-2.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-3.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-4.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-5.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-6.
   Erodium moschatum   -   Image Code: ERDMS-7.

Links & Further info

Google Web

Google Images

Yahoo Web

Yahoo Images




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



The Plant List


Vienna Virt. Hb.





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