No instance of the occurrence of this plant in Glacial, earlier or later, beds is known at present. To-day it is found in the Temperate Northern Zone in Europe, North Africa, Siberia, Western Asia to India, North America. In Great Britain it is common, but absent in West Suffolk, Montgomery, Flint, Roxburgh, Westerness, Cantire, South Ebudes, Mid Ebudes, North Ebudes, Sutherland, Caithness, and the Northern Isles. In Ireland it is quite rare.

Sand Spurrey is a plant of rocky districts where there are accumulations of sand or gravel. Thus it will grow in the Midlands on the Pennines, where igneous and volcanic rocks have by disintegration produced an arenaceous subsoil, or on rocks and walls. Along the maritime tracts of the coast counties it will be found where there are wide stretches of sandy heath.