For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move. ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

Monday, 28 June 2010

June Wildflower Survey

Yesterday I made a brief botanical survey of the wildflowers growing in and around our village. The location is the Trent valley flood plain in Nottinghamshire, and the geology is mudstone and clay, sand and gravel. I noted all the wildflowers I saw on an hour's circular walk alongside roadside verges and ditches, down hedgebanked lanes, past a pond, and across farmland and some uncultivated ground. It's ordinary English countryside and I didn't expect to find any rarities. However I was surprised at the variety of species I did discover - 75 in all. This was my list (including any native wildflowers I found growing in gardens):

Mugwort, marsh-marigold, meadow buttercup, creeping buttercup, greater spearwort, common poppy, opium poppy, gold-of-pleasure, garlic mustard, red campion, bladder campion, common chickweed, pineapple weed, good King Henry, common mallow, meadow crane's-bill, dove's-foot crane's-bill, white clover, red clover, common bird's-foot-trefoil, common vetch, tufted vetch, ox-eye daisy, bramble, germander speedwell, dog rose, white bryony, great willowherb, rosebay willowherb, ivy, black mustard, ground elder, curled dock, common nettle, bogbean, green alkanet, bindweed, hedge bindweed, ivy-leaved toadflax, foxglove, bulrush, creeping tormentil, herb-robert, black medick, common comfrey, wild radish, white dead-nettle, ribwort plantain, cleavers, lady's bedstraw, red valerian, common groundsel, common ragwort, daisy, yarrow, feverfew, sea mayweed, lesser burdock, prickly sow-thistle, smooth sow-thistle, common dandelion, lily-of-the-valley, nipplewort, creeping thistle, purple-loosetrife, hawkweed, smooth hawk's-beard, bugloss, meadowsweet, cow parsley, hemlock, hogweed, upright hedge-parsley, meadow vetchling, black horehound.

Not bad considering the unexceptional nature of the habitat.

8 comments:

Bonnie said...

Wow! Amazing what one can find when one pays attention! That research needs to be filed somewhere in your community's records!!!

Sorry about England's loss to Germany yesterday. Have you recovered?

The Solitary Walker said...

I'm still in shock, Bonnie. It was an utter rout! Never mind, there's more to life than football (although tell that to my son).

Tramp said...

SW
One of my dad's tricks was to take us round our enormous garden to collect wild flowers on someone's birthday, one flower for each year. He could be quite inventive...Tramp

The Weaver of Grass said...

Yes Robert - proof that if one keeps ones eyes open there is plenty to see in the countryside. A good count.

The Solitary Walker said...

Lovely strategem of your dad's, Tramp... and Weaver, that tally really did amaze me, considering it's not some rich chalk or limestone habitat...

George said...

I take my hat off to anyone who conducts wildflower surveys, and to find 75 species in such a short time and limited area is quite amazing. I suspect that the joy, however, was not in the numbers, but in being a good witness, as you always are, to the glories of the natural world.

The Solitary Walker said...

Like cars, computers and arithmetic, George, lists don't turn me on in themselves - they are simply a means to an end.(Although, intoned, some lists can be hypnotic, poetic litanies.)

What a generous, wonderful thing to say - about being a witness to the glories of the natural world. I really do want to communicate something of this. Indeed I have a passion about it. And if any of my posts are even just slightly successful from time to time in communicating such enthusiasms, then my blogging journey will have been worthwhile.

fireweed meadow said...

This is why June is my favourite month of the year, the abundance of wildflowers. I'm sorry to say I didn't know black medick until last week, even though it has been underfoot almost everywhere all my life. I felt guilty for overlooking it all these years.