The species is native to the North Temperate Zone of Eurasia. In Europe it is present almost everywhere except the extreme north. In North America the plant is naturalized. This plant can be found in forests or dry grasslands, in scrub and open woodland, in grassy but not too wet places, in the edges of woods and along the margins of roads and trails. It prefers calcareous soils. The plant is widely cultivated in gardens, with flowers in a range of colours including white, pink, blue and purple. Numerous cultivars have been developed.
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