Oblivious to the ongoing drought there are some lovely patches of Lady’s Bedstraw in full bloom now. Look on grassland on poor soils such as around Camber Castle. Wikipedia here.
Archive for the 'Flowers' Category
This lovely flower is now in full bloom and has seed pods, but it has declined in the RX area due to sea defence works, trampling and rabbits. You can still enjoy it just above the high water mark at Rye Harbour. If you look closely you will see that some leaves have semi-circular cut margins, where the Pea Weevil Sitona lineatus has eaten it.
It has been an unusual year of weather, so far, and this seems to be reflected most clearly by flowering dates. We are now at the peak of flowering for Sea Kale, whereas in most previous years this occured around 15th May. I expect other people have their own seasonal indicators… The first flowering Yellow Horned Poppy and Viper’s Bugloss were also seen today.
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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.
About a dozen Common Darters were catching flies and sunbathing this afternoon at the reedbed viewpoint at Castle Water. They were very approachable, especially along the handrails. But not much longer before they disappear. Also, nearby were flowering Hedgerow Cranesbill, Bristly Ox-tongue and Viper’s Bugloss.
One of the more characteristic plants of the grazing marsh ditches at East Guldeford is fine-leaved water-dropwort Oenanthe aquatica, a species that in early spring has divided leaves that look very much like an aquatic plant, but as the summer progresses it emerges above water level with a characteristic swollen stem that has fine ridges running down it, with cross joints where the leaf stems emerge. The flowers are packed into white umbels.
Right now flowering is mostly over and Read the rest of this entry »
Stinking hawk’s-beards were introduced to the garden of a property on Dungeness in 2007, sowing them on a lawn growing on soil-capped shingle. The following notes are based on observations by Dave Bunney and Owen Leyshon, with a few observations of my own. The photo below shows the first generation of self sown plants, which germinated in 2008, and flowered this summer. 34 plants were recorded here this year. The photograph shows the seed heads, some closed, with dense white seed heads, others open showing the “dandelion clock” and two thirds of the way down the right-hand edge of the picture a star-shaped seed-head that has lost most of it’s seed-heads.
This plant is the only member of it’s family Read the rest of this entry »
Well Bee Orchid – which I think is our most stunning flower, is out now. This year there seems to be fewer than normal. They have a fascinating biology which can be discovered in David Lang’s book online…