Rough chervil is similar in appearance to cow parsley but is less completive and rarely takes over. It is later flowering and easily identified by its stem which is distinctly rough to the touch and covered with purple splotches. The flowers, which are in bloom from late May to July, attract a wide range of insects particularly hoverflies and beetles.
NB In older books it may still be listed under the old botanical name of Chaerophyllum temulentum.
Rough chervil is a biennial or Monocarpic perennial characteristic of rank grassland along hedges and woodland edges, road verges, railway banks and wasteland. It prefers light shade but can grow in full sun but not in deep shade. It also grows on a wide range of soil types but is rarely found in damp, acidic conditions.
Seasonal regeneration is solely by seed and therefore some soil disturbance is required if the new seedlings are to establish successfully.
As the seed requires a period of chilling to break dormancy we would recommend sowing in the autumn.