Showing posts from August, 2018

Dover White Cliffs - 30/06/18

There is a beautiful flower filled walk along the white cliffs of Dover from the National Trust car park above the docks to St. Margarets Lighthouse a few miles away with wonderful views. There are several routes you can take and each has its own attraction. The whole area comprises of typical rich chalk grassland flora and associated insects with some arable verges as well that are worthy of a look aorund. Species such as Early Spider Orchid, Field Pepperwort and Hoary Stock can all be found here (see previous blogs). We found so many wonderful wildflowers, but I'll only show you those I haven't recently featured along with some fine views. Kidney Vetch with its cottony fluffy bits between the flowers - it's the food plant of the small Blue butterfly caterpillars.  Anthyllis vulneraria The Slender or Seaside Thistle. this is as about open as the flowers get. Carduus tenuiflorus The dead looking bronzed Carline Thistles were in

North Essex and the Suffolk Brecks - 23/06/18

This was a follow up trip from the 1st May to the Brecks to find some other later flowering rarities. We had a good idea of where to go but will give special thanks to Karen Woolley and Brian Laney who helped out with specific areas at some locations. On a single day trip, there isn't much time to explore and find one's target plants without such information. One such tip Karen gave us was to stop off en route in North Essex to see some magnificent rare plants. On the way to it we passed numerous Knapweed Broomrapes, sadly gone over. Needless to say I got lost, but eventually found an unassuming country lane with  an unmown verge. This is that verge! This is the amazing Crested Cow-wheat, a hemiparasite and very rare. It is absent from Kent and East Sussex and there are only a few colonies left in Essex and the surrounding counties. Given its rarity and beauty, forgive me for adding several photos of it.  Melampyrum cristatum If that wa