Five disused colliery waste tips in the Somerset Coalfield, 12, 15, 21, 55 and 98 years old, respectively, were examined to determine the life forms of the naturally-occurring vascular plant species. Hemicryptophytes comprised between 68 and 79% of the number of species on each tip. Rosette hemicryptophytes comprised 31.8% of the species on the 12-year tip, declining to 11.8% on the 98-year tip. It is suggested that artificial planting of rosette hemicryptophytes may be beneficial in reclamation schemes. 3 tables.