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Friday, May 01, 2009


Twice in one week I have been very pleased to welcome conservationists to have a good look at our local meadow. This is a private nature reserve.

The photo of one of our visitors was taken this week and the colourful Grass vetchling was a new species found on the field last summer.

Today it was people from "Plantlife".
They were interested to hear about our 4 years of looking after a 4 acre grass meadow and how we had started with no experience in such management undertakings. The field is only just coming to life but should have more to offer visitors over the next few months. We hope that our mutual interests can come together so that we can welcome school parties and groups of volunteers who might use the field for visits to practice plant identification , help with surveys and maybe even hedge maintenance and laying. Over the next month or so we will try to work out a possible programme.
There is a great potential for us to learn from being involved in such a project so that our field increases its ecological value and interest.

Here is an extract from their web site:


Who we are, what we do…in the UK

Plantlife is a charity working to protect Britain’s wild flowers and plants, fungi and lichens in the habitats in which they are found.

We were established in 1989 after a meeting of conservationists and botanists, led by Professor David Bellamy, called for a new organisation, an 'RSPB for plants', to champion wild plant conservation. Today, Plantlife is the leading charity working to protect wild plants and their habitats with national offices in England, Scotland and Wales. HRH The Prince of Wales is our Patron and Adrian Darby OBE our President.

Plantlife identifies and conserves sites of exceptional botanical importance, rescues wild plants on the brink of extinction and works to ensure that common plants don’t become rare in the wild. We are a Lead Partner in the Government’s Biodiversity Action Plan (which targets the UK’s Priority Species and Habitats for conservation action) and are responsible for conserving over 100 of the UK’s most threatened plants and fungi. We do this by:

As the UK’s only membership charity dedicated to the conservation of wild plants, we encourage everyone to become a member of Plantlife. Your support helps us to get the message across that the UK’s flora is, quite simply, the bedrock upon which all our wildlife rests.


Greater Celandine

Life is full of surprises and this evening I visited our local store and just happened to notice in an untidy area alongside the shop a bushy green plant with small star shaped yellow flowers. I have only seen this plant once before a couple of weeks ago on a path in Oxfordshire. I believe it to be Greater Celandine. Perhaps it is quite common and I have just not picked it out before. Whatever the truth of that , it is still a real pleasure to add wildflowers to my list of personal sightings. I didn't have a camera with me so can't show what it looked like but here is a link to a photo:

I did take a small piece home and took these photos. With a bit of luck the flowers might set seed which I can return to help spread the plant further. It looks as if the plant is set on a toilet seat but that's not so. I used my wifes sewing machine case to give a plain beackground. It works quite well I think.