Autumnal crowfoot flowers

1st November 2009, Sunday

Another observation along the edge of the White Kemp Sewer yesterday were several patches of thread-leaved water crowfoot Ranunculus trichophyllus in flower.  These were seedlings that had recently germinated on exposed damp mud, grown rapidly during the recent warm weather, and managed to avoid the need to undergo an aquatic phase over winter before flowering.

This plant is distinguished from brackish water crowfoot Ranunculus baudottii as it possesses only the finely divided aquatic leaves, and relatively small flowers.  Both species are common on Walland Marsh.

It looks like they are going to have to adapt to an aquatic lifestyle soon, as the recent run of warm dry weather is breaking.