Sunday, August 12, 2018

Far and Wide

Back in mid July we explored near the head of Cwm Senni with a long list obtained. The highlight was probably approaching this display, which we don't often see in Brecknock.
Hedge Bedstraw, Briwydd y clawdd or Galium album (Galium mollugo as was)
There were lovely floriferous meadows near the Afon Senni itself:

Then two of us attempted a longish walk in the Rhiwnant Valley (south of Caban-coch Reservoir, Elan). The day was much hotter than forecast!

My co-recorder had already recorded this and we hoped to find further populations higher up the valley but failed on that quest.
White Beak-sedge, Corsfrwynen wen or Rhynchospora alba

But there was plenty else to see and record including Sundew in flower.
Round-leaved Sundew, Gwlithlys or Drosera rotundifolia

Then I was over to France for a week to join family but couldn't help spotting some notable flora.
Field Eryngo, Celynnen y maes or Eryngium campestre

This is very rare on our south coast but I saw it in two channel coastal locations there on road verges and the top of sea-cliffs. Obviously it is a relative of Sea Holly which is a common enough coastal sight in the British Isles.

The Foret Domaniale d'Hesdin was impressive and we would have done a longer walk in cooler (less than 35°C) conditions. It is dominated by huge Beeches with a substantial population of Hornbeam as well.
And we stumbled on this (three sites in Brecknock) delight.
Dwarf Elder, Danewort, Ysgawen Fair or Sambucus ebulus

and a Thistle I didn't know until I looked it up. It's a rare casual in the UK.
Cabbage Thistle, Ysgallen dail bresych or Cirsium oleraceum

On return a group of us did a linear walk from Pentre-bach north of Sennybridge to Llywel on the A40. It's a lovely well-marked bridle way to start with but less easy to find at the end!

With varied habitats along the route we got a good list of species. This patch of Cudweed was notable for its density.
Marsh Cudweed, Edafeddog y gors or Gnaphalium uliginosum

And right in the middle of the walk on the upland common the nearly dried up stream was supporting a large population of a Water-crowfoot that I have yet to ID properly. Hopefully my sample will produce flowers in captivity or there will be a long walk next year to see this in more normal conditions. The population we saw was notable for the complete lack of normal laminar leaves.

Common Water-crowfoot? Crafanc-y-frân y dŵr or Ranunculus aquatilis?

The next outing took us to the areas around the Afon Llia - which is the stream near the standing stone Maen Llia.
Maen Llia photographed some time ago.

Thankfully this area was not completely dry (we felt the local sheep were relatively lucky) and there were patches of this fern near the streams.
Lemon-scented Fern, Rhedynen bêr y mynydd or Oreopteris limbosperma

There was plenty to record here where we had our lunch including Alternate Water-milfoil.
But not flowering as profusely as this example from Traeth Mawr.
Alternate Water-milfoil, Myrdd-ddail blodau bob yn ail or Myriophyllum alterniflorum

We noticed these rocks with a thin algal growth and bubbles formed on them in the sun.

Right by the parking place this cropped up - it's all over the county now!
Sand Spurrey, Troellig arfor coch or Spergularia rubra

Then two of us visited Gilfach Reserve (Radnor Wildlife Trust) for a glorious day looking at lichens and doing a small amount of recording for the reserve. It's good to get out of county occasionally!

Blood-spot Lichen or Ophioparma ventosa

And a few days ago I had some time to kill in Hereford where a walk along the Wye revealed this magnificent example of Mistletoe on a Black Poplar:
Mistletoe, Uchelwydd or Viscum album