Bur Chervil - Anthriscus caucalis


Height 18 to 40 inches. The umbels of white flowers are well separated, with few flowers in each umbel. Flowers have a light-green double-rounded centre and five stamens with creamy anthers. The tiny hard fruits, each about 3 mm long, are covered in hooked spines. The leaves are fern-like, finely divided, and 2 to 3 pinnate. Tastes of aniseed.

Identification difficulty
Recording advice

Good photographs required showing flowers, seeds and leaves in detail. (RPR)


Disturbed ground and sandy soils.

When to see it

Flowering Season: April to June.

Life History


UK Status

Widespread but local in Britain, however it may be plentiful in certain locations.

VC55 Status

It was not listed in the Flora of Leicestershire (Primavesi & Evans 1988) or Flora of Rutland (Messenger,1971).

In the current checklist (Jeeves 2011) it is listed as 'native; disturbed ground' and as Rare.

It is listed on the current VC55 Rare Plant Register (Hall and Woodward 2022) as Locally Scarce (i.e. present in 4-10 sites) but increasing. 

Nearly all records are from the limestone soils in the east of VC55.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map

Species profile

Common names
Bur Chervil, Bur Parsley
Species group:
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
16/05/2021 (Smith, Peter)
Last record:
16/05/2021 (Smith, Peter)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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