Janet Higgins

Wild Basil

wild basil
Wild Basil (Clinopodium vulgare)  Photo: Bob Ellis

An amazing display of Wild Basil on roadside verges throughout TM28A near Brockdish.  Occasionally found with other South Norfolk specialities such as Sulphur Clover (Trifolium ochroleucon) and Pepper Saxifrage (Silaum silaus).

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.