Sunday, April 30, 2017

Another encounter with Marsh Violet and other walks

It may be the right time of year but was certainly a surprise to me to find flowers of Marsh Violet for the second time in a week when we went up through woodland to get onto Carngafallt Nature Reserve near Elan. It was Sue who first suggested we were seeing leaves of this but I was unsure - having not encountered it in woodland before - but the flowers we then found in relative abundance higher up confirmed it. It isn't a species I expect to find in woodland so maybe I have been missing it in the past.
Marsh Violet, Fioled y gors or Viola palustris

There plenty else to record and admire in the wood (a 1970s arboretum planting that has gone wild and is now managed by the Woodland Trust) including this delicate plant firmly expected in woodland and even named to say so.
Wood Horsetail, Marchrawnen y coed or Equisetum sylvaticum

We reached the common for lunch and  started exploring there.

- encountering plenty of Bilberry
Bilberry, Llusen or Vaccinium myrtillus

and then in a very boggy area a variety of wet specialist plants including:
Hare's-tail Cottongrass, Plu’r gweunydd unben or Eriophorum vaginatum

Steph's eagle eyes found the minute threads of Cranberry and this picture is of a flower in bud held in her mitt.
Cranberry, Llygaeren or Vaccinium oxycoccos

The blanket bog was too deep and quaky to fully explore to its centre - and we were told by a farmer that he had lost a cow there.

This view is taken on our way down and shows the A470 following the Wye down from Rhayader.

Then I went with Hay U3A Geology group to Pwll y Wrach Nature Reserve where we had the geology trail very well explained by Wendy and also saw the Wild Service Trees there just coming into leaf.
Wild Service-tree, Cerddinen wyllt or Sorbus torminalis

The reserve was dryer than any of us can remember ( a relief) and looking quite stunning.

Other plants encountered included:
Toothwort, Deintlys or Lathraea squamaria
Early-purple Orchid, Tegeirian coch y gwanwyn or Orchis mascula
These two pictures by Martin

And then I led a walk at the Talgarth Walking Festival around Llangorse lake and up onto Pen y Comin for a moderate climb to a superb view:

where the group took their lunch.

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