Greater Periwinkle - Vinca major


Short to medium spreading evergreen subshrub with trailing and arching stems, often rooting down at the tip. Leaves shiny green oval and hairy fringed at the outside margins. Flowers 30 to 50 mm purplish blue five parted.

Similar Species

Lesser Periwinkle, Vinca minor, is similar but smaller and with less upright growth. They can be easily separated by examining the edges of the leaves: Vinca major have hairy edges whilst Vinca minor are hairless.

Identification difficulty

A garden escape sometimes becoming established in hedgerows and on roadside and railway verges.

When to see it

March to May.

Life History


UK Status

Fairly frequent and widespread in Britain.

VC55 Status

Occasional as a wild plant in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 29 of the 617 tetrads.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map