This section is from the book "British Wild Flowers - In Their Natural Haunts Vol2-4", by A. R. Horwood. Also available from Amazon: A British Wild Flowers In Their Natural Haunts.
The visitors are Hymenoptera (Apidae), Lepidoptera, Diptera (Syrphidae).
Like other species Ragged Robin is dis-persed by the wind. The capsule opens above, and allows animals or the wind to cause the seeds to be flung to a distance when the stem is shaken.
The plant is fond of peat, living only in a wet, peaty soil, which is found in low-lying districts or meadows.
It is infested by a fungus, Ustilago violacea, one of the rusts and smuts. The other species of Lychnis are infested by Pink Rust, Puccinia arenariae, Ascochyta Di-anthi, Puccinia lychni-dearum. Two moths, the White Spot (Dianthoecia albimacula) and the Marbled Coronet (D. conspersa), visit it.
Flos-cuculi, Tragus, was once a generic name, and is Latin for Cuckoo-flower. Ragged Robin is known by the names of Bachelor's Buttons, Meadow Campion, Cock's-caim, Cock's-comb, Crow-flower, Fair Maid of France, Cuckoo Gilliflower, Indian Pink, Marsh-gilliflower, Meadow Pink, Pleasant-in-sight, Ragged Jack, Ragged Robin, Robin Hood, Rough Robin, Meadow Spink, Wild Williams. The name Cuckoo Gilliflower was given in allusion to its flowering in spring, and its resemblance to a Gilliflower. Meadow Spink is given because its flowers resemble those of Dianthus plumarius.
Photo. B. Hanley - Ragged Robin (Lychnis Flos-cuculi, L.)
When cultivated in the garden the flowers are double. Occasionally the plant is white-flowered.
Essential Specific Characters: 50. Lychnis Flos-cuculi, L. - Stem angular, purplish-green, leaves lanceolate, flowers pink, notched, in a loose panicle, calyx tubular, capsule 5-toothed.