Longfield - Kent 17/06/20

 Longfield in Kent is my home town and it is surrounded by fields to the north, mature woodlands to the south and a variety of chalk habitats inbetween. One of the better habitats in the area was formed by the renovation of the railway link line, formerly disused but brought back into service when the HS1 ran to Waterloo a few years back.

Below is a selection of plants I photographed on this walk of about 2 hours. I hope you like them.

I found a patch of these plants growing in the wild last year and they were a West Kent 1st (VC16) for definitly growing in the wild. It is Mediterranean Sea Holly and this year was in full flower with additional plants found. It's actually on railway land and was not planted.

See Kent Botany page 29


Eryngium bourgatii


The first Lizard Orchid in this area for almost 100 years failed to survive the Spring drought of 2020. It put forth a flower spike then had weeks without any rain at all causing it to shrivel up. I do hope that the tuber survived this trauma and that it will arise again perhaps in a couple of years time.




 Nearby was our native colourful Pyramidal Orchid. What was unusual about this and others nearby was that they were growing on an arable field edge, obviously unsprayed. I don't think this was for any aesthetic reasons by the farmer, but because the field edge backed up against back gardens and no doubt spraying herbicides around kids playing in such gardens might lead to some lawsuits!

Anacamptis pyramidalis

Nearby gardens equals throwouts and in this field not far from the orchids were patches of this hybrid Cranesbill.

Druce's Cranesbill

Geranium endressii x versicolor = G.  x oxonianum


 Hundreds of Ox-eye Daisies still in flower in late June when they peak a month before.

Leucanthemum vulgare

A Swollen-thighed Beetle (males have bigger thighs) on a Field Scabious flower.
 Oedemera nobilis

A clump of Knapweed Broomrape seems to appear every few years at KWT Longfield chalk bank. They came up in 2020 and surprising there are still vigourous host plants of Greater Scabious around them.


Orobanche elatior

Common Milkwort comes in blue, purple, pink or white. They are quite small and uniquely have a flower within a flower.

Polygala vulgaris

Blackberries forming and then Cherries on the trees showed that  Summer is most definitely finite and would soon be over.

Prunus avium

Some grasses look amazing close up. This is Timothy with its distiinctive spikelets.

Phleum pratensis

A Small Heath butterfly finished off a lovely walk.

Take care




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