June 2021 - Botanical Finds from Kent

 Here is a round up of my best botanical finds for June, including beautiful, rare or amazing plants.   First up is Sea Clover, a Kent RPR species from the Isle of Grain. Too early here for seeds which in itself are distinctive, but the flowers are about half the size of Red Clover and look pinker.   Trifolium squamosum  It being June, I suppose there must be orchids! One of our most impressive is a hybrid between Common Spotted and Southern Marsh. They are usually much bigger than either parent, so are easy to find. D. x grandis  In a dry area not far away from this massive hybrid orchid was a stand of Man Orchids. These were quite fortunate, as a new road had been built missing them by yards. I do expect they will colonise the new road verge in the next years or so or at  least until they scrub over in years to come. Orchis anthropophora  Knotted Clover on Littlestone Warren. Much smaller than inland specimens I've seen. Trifolium striatum   Even smaller was Subterraneum Clover w

May 2021 Botanical Finds from Kent

 Here is a selection of interesting plants I found this May in the Kent area, I hope you enjoy them. Starting off with  one of the early flowering mouse ears, it's the Grey mouse-ear, a species only found in a few counties with North Kent probably having the largest population of them in the UK. A few years back I found a new colony on a field edge and despite being sprayed and suffering successive Spring droughts they have persisted. I couldn't find any in flower, but here's one in seed. Note how very hairy it is and that the hairs overlap the sepal tips by a long way. The hairs aren't glandular and the inflorescence is lax. All these features are different to the look alike Sticky and Little mouse-ear plants. Cerastium brachypetalum   Midway through May, I found a patch of these plants on an ant hill at Longfield Chalk Bank where they have been absent since 2013. I thought they had died out here as Kent Wildlife Trust had failed to maintain a suitable habitat. Fortuna