Having been here in the winter to investigate its bryophyte flora, we agreed that it would be fun to come back in the summer to see the flowering plants. It was a wet day, but we were not deterred (much) and duly met up at the pub to see what we could find. Here is the Pool on our October visit – it was very dried up and about half the size on our May visit despite the recent (and ongoing) rainfall.
I didn’t think we would beat the previous day’s total from our meeting at Rhyl (see last week’s post) but we did! 152 species for the day. It was a record breaking meeting in other ways with an amazing 12 people turning up to meet me and go out botanising, including friends from not just Warrington Plant Group but the Flintshire BSBI group as well, not forgetting the BSBI Cheshire vice-county recorder. Thank you to those who attended for all your contributions 🙂
Fumaria muralis ssp boraei photographed by Phil James, det Martyn Stead
Having explored the vascular plant flora of Lumb Brook Wood last year, we thought it would be a good place to record mosses and liverworts. The site is mature woodland, is thought to be ancient at least in part and has the benefit of a stream running through it, so we thought it had lots of bryological potential.
Our first coastal meeting turned up our first new county record! Debs and I spent ages looking at a sow-thistle in one of the ditches on Norton Marsh before concluding it was a mystery plant – a hybrid, perhaps. We both went up to it thinking it was going to be field sow thistle Sonchus arvensis on account of its overall size, look and large flowerheads. But no. Where were the massive glandular hairs for which this plant is famous amongst botanists? Seriously, the hairs are legendary, you can see them from across the street they are so large and abundant. No hairs. Back to the drawing board. Continue reading
It may seem strange to hold a botanical meeting on the edge of a business park, but this is a diverse 1km square with woodland, grassland and river and we found 161 species of vascular plant in our day’s excursion without even covering the whole square. Might even be better than the adjacent square which we covered last year! Unfortunately it was raining, which cramped our style a bit, but four hardy botanists turned out anyway to explore what the square had to offer. Continue reading
Warrington Plant Group are getting brave! Not content with mere square bashing we now apply ourselves to difficult plant groups like sedges and marsh orchids 🙂
We met at Rixton Clay Pits SSSI to investigate the reason it was designated of national importance for nature conservation – its marshy grassland flora. Continue reading
The Dingle and Fords Rough are well-known woodlands in the Lumb Brook valley popular with locals. There’s even a tea room just up the road. We were there on the same day as a group of children splashing around in the river and learning about wildlife with a local ranger. Excellent outdoor fun!
Six botanists gathered to explore the flora – and splash around in the river 🙂 Continue reading