The Alpine Knorpellattich (Chondrilla chondrilloides) is a rather inconspicuous composite plant that grows 15 - 30 cm high. The pioneer plant community "Knorpellateflur" is named after it. As a typical pioneer plant of the wild river landscape, the preferred habitats of the alpine knotweed are gravel areas that are freshly filled and repeatedly flooded. Its habitat is characterised by constant change. The alpine knotweed, together with the other plants of its community, such as the Creeping Gypsophila (Gypsophila repens), the Alpine flaxweed (Linaria alpina) and the White silverroot (Dryas octopetala), well adapted. But as soon as these changes are absent, it is quickly displaced by other plants.
The regulation and damming of numerous rivers in the Northern Alps has almost completely destroyed the habitat of cartilaginous lettuce.
The Knotted Lettuce Meadow is one of the most endangered plant communities in Central Europe. It also provides a habitat for the spotted snare-cricket (Bryodema tuberculata), one of the largest and most beautiful field grasshoppers in Central Europe.