Road Verge Visit A2 Northfleet, Kent 19th May 2015

I have passed this interchange many times and often thought it looked good for a spot of botany. Well today I had a look around. It's not a motorway so you are allowed to walk the verges of the slip roads but obviously take care! I have a reflective jacket for such occassions. There were masses of wildflower and insects, here's some of what I found and photographed. First stop was a layby on the North of the interchange where I found this Wintercress. Unlike many other yellow crucifers, these aren't recent crop relicts. Barbarea vulgaris Then across the road to the central reservation of the road outside of Sainsbury's. Here I found a surprise Lesser Sea-Spurrey. This is a coastal salt marsh plant, but is spreading inland thanks to us salting the roads every  Winter. Spergularia  marina Hemlock had grown very tall in a short space of time. It's quite poisonous but I think more attractive than the superficially similar Cow Parsle

An Amazing Place, Ranscombe Farm, Kent - 17th May 2016

Managed by Plantlife, the only UK organisation with reserves for wildflowers, Ranscombe Farm is close to the M2 and urban concentration of Medway. Yet when you enter it's like stepping back in time with fields full of flowers within the crops, wide weed filled crop margins and orchid filled ancient woodlands. The views are pretty good too! Plantlife Website First up was a meadow filled with Buttercups, Dandelions, Speedwells and lots of Cut-leaved Cranesbills. Geranium dissectum Various moths fluttered out of the grasses as we walked. I think this is a Burnet Companion, difficult for me to say only seeing the underside. Hop Trefoil were abundant, looking like miniature hops. These have more than 20 flowers in the head with a rolled over reflective lower petal, helps tell them apart from the similar Lesser Trefoil which had fewer flowers and straight forward pea type flowers. Trifolium campestre We then entered Mill Hill