Saturday, May 18, 2013

A verge and a wood

I joined Steph Coates and several of our (Brecon Botanical Recording) number on Wednesday to take a first (?) look at a RVNR high up above Llangors lake. These Brecon road verges can be very botanically diverse and rewarding to explore and this was no exception.

The most unexpected find was "Hidcote Comfrey" well-established in the wild:

But we also saw good populations of Common Dog-violet, Cowslips, Moschatel and much more. (More than 70 species).

Goldilocks buttercup was found as expected on the lower verge - it seems to be a good spring for this species, which I gather from Stace is like the Dandelions in reproducing asexually and, on the continent botanist have over 100 micro-species to determine (if they wish). No wonder Nigel Farage wants us out of Europe !
Goldilocks, Ranunculus auricomus, the upper leaves are characteristic and many flowers are imperfect in most populations - with a petal or more missing.

I also came across a good crop of Goldilocks on the path up the Login brook to Hay common the next day. I've passed there many times at different times of year and never noticed it before. It was in bud and just about to flower then so now is the time to go if you want to see this. It's only just past the graveyard where you go into the Login cwm.

I was on my way to Rook wood and this route looked promising. There were some lovely views.

This path brought me to the top end of the wood so I was able to record the marginal trees as I walked along the fence. It turns out there is no proper entrance though until you come well down the far side so it's not the ideal route to the wood as it turns out. I spent a good time in the wood, not finding anything very special but seeing many good woodland species and noting that there is a fair population of tall Wild Cherry tress all through the wood from the flowers strewn below.

Wild Cherry, Prunus avium - it's only "Bird Cherry" in Latin !

It was also good to sit next to a very fresh Arum flower and listen to and observe all the trapped insects inside:

The bluebells here were probably about a week before their best - and already very impressive.

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