Showing posts from 2020

Botanical Assortments from Kent, September to October 2020

 As the year progressed, I took fewer photographs as, due to ill health, I am finding it difficult to get down low to do so and very difficult to get back up again. As such, only rare or unusual plants got their photos taken. Here is a small selection from those late season trips and this blog concludes my botainical adventures from 2020. I will use my blogs in later years to revisit the best bits of 2020, I'll try and forget everything else about it..... From Farninhgam Woods Bugloss - Anchusa arvensis The last flowering Deptford Pink - Dianthus armeria - a Kent RPR species Here's the Dianthus habitat in the photo below. It shows the area becoming very overgrown with Sweet Chestnut, Oak and other common shrubs such as Dog Rose all crowding out Dianthus . This is of concern as Dianthus requires some disturbed ground for seed to germinate and trees from the adjoining woodland were in danger of swamping it. As such, I contacted Natural England and sent them this photo highlight

KWT Sevenoaks Wildlife Reserve - 21/07/20

 This is primarily a wildfowl reserve run by the Kent Wildlife Trust near Sevenoaks. There are several lakes with paths around them, though until recently these paths did not circumnavigate the lakes. A recently opened 2 mile long path did go all the way around and so tempted us to take a walk and see what flora might be there. This is what we found of interest.   Heath Speedwell Veronica officinalis   We found a few stands of the alien Yellow Balsam with its pretty though small flowers, offset by its very large leaves.   Impatiens parviflora   The image below shows the tiny flowers and large leaves of this plant. The invasive alien New Zealand Pygmyweed in a semi dried up pond. Crassula helmsii     Marsh Woundwort, a plant I had not found here before the new path was opened up. Unusual in west Kent. Stachys palustris               Meadowsweet was present in some lake marginal areas. Filipendula ulmaria         Gypsywort's leaves give it's identity away even without flowers, th

Luddesdown, Kent - 26th July 2020

 The North Downs around Luddesdown is in an area of outstanding natural beauty with steep rolling downs and patchworks of fields and copses. It was here I chose to explore and expand upon the botanical records for the area whilst I was there. Chickory is unmissable as it is a big plant with big blue, showy flowers. It's becoming quite rare in England and is on the Kent RPR (rare plant register) so as to monitor populations. There is some debate over whether it is an archeotype or native, though I think in Kent it probably is native. I am sure if this species were simply from cultivation it would have died out many years ago. Cichorium intybus Borage was found growing as an arable "weed" amongst farmed fruit bushes. Most likely sown as ground cover, but this species does tend to pop up along roadsides and field edges occasionally. Borago officinalis     A quiet country lane meanders through this area and its verges are home to many wildflowers including these beautiful Net