Janet Higgins

Betony

betony
Betony (Betonica officinalis)   Photo: Bob Ellis

We found a few patches of Betony in bud in Silfield nature reserve near the Lizard in Wymondam, then later in the open meadow we came across a mass of purple flowers

Common Cow-wheat

cow wheat
Common Cow-wheat (Melampyrum pratense)  Photo: Bob Ellis

The two colonies of Common Cow-wheat at either end of the strip of woodland between Eaton Park and Bluebell Road are both doing well. This plant is hemi-parasitic, meaning that it relies on obtaining some of its nutrients from the roots of nearby plants.

Milk Thistle

milk thistle
Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum) Photo: Bob Ellis

There were a couple of typically large plants growing in a roadside hedge on the outskirts of Attlebridge. An easy plant to spot and identify with its marbled-white veined leaves and large capitula with spiny phyllaries.

Shore Horsetail

horsetail
Shore Horsetail (Equisetum x litorale)   Photo: Bob Ellis

A small colony of this hybrid Horsetail was found near a ditch in Carlton St Peter. The hollow stem and pattern of side branches alerted me to the possibility that this may be a hybrid.

White Hedgerow Crane's-bill

hedgerow cransbill
White Hedgerow Crane's-bill (Geranium pyrenaicum)  Photo: Bob Ellis

This very attractive white-flowered form of Hedgerow Crane's-bill made a lovely display, extending over 10 meters at the base of a hedge bordering an agricultural field, climbing through Barren Brome (Anisantha sterilis).

Abundant Water Violet

water violet
Water Violet (Hottonia palustris)  Photo: Janet Higgins

This is the first time I have seen Water Violet flowering in this ditch which was dug out about five years ago, although it is known to flower intermittently in ditches throughout Marston marsh.