Nature Champions: Mountain everlasting


This woolly white member of the daisy family grows on Scotland’s mountains in grassy and heathery areas throughout Scotland but particularly on our highest hills. It has been called Scotland’s edelweiss although in Gaelic its name, Spog cait means cat’s paw. Its common name refers to its medicinal benefits  and was known in the past as ‘Live for ever’. It was used as a cure for mumps and for bites form poisonous snakes.

Action Needed

  • Promote Scotland’s mountains as places where unique species live, encouraging respect for their fragile habitats.
  • Introduce a licencing regime for muirburn in Scotland’s uplands in favour of sustainable land management practices.
  • Introduce legally binding targets for reducing nitrogen oxides pollution.


In common with other upland plants, its key threats come from loss of suitable habitat, loss to climate change, over-grazing, and muirburn. Atmospheric pollution in the form of nitrogen oxides has also been identified as a key cause of decline.

MSP Nature Champion

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