I would walk 500 miles...

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Sunday, 19 June 2011 17:01

As of today, I have walked roughly 495 miles on these farm surveys (based on an average of 11 miles per visit). So, on the next one (probably Tuesday) at around 5 miles into it, I will have walked 500 miles. Interestingly this morning, I started at 5.45 am with a plant tick. I came across a grid reference for Dwarf Elder (nothing to do with Lord of the Rings) near one of the farms yesterday. I put the grid reference into UK Grid Reference Finder and saw that it was pretty much where I park my car when I go there! It was indeed visible from the car.
Quite an odd looking thing with purple anthers. Not as different to Elder as I would have thought and quite robust, hardly what I would call a dwarf! However, the best thing about today was the arable plants. Best of all were four specimens of Night-flowering Catchfly, including this really bright one. Of the four specimens, only one had two flowers, the others only one. The only other specimen I have seen of this plant had only one flower on it too. I wonder if this is typical?
On the bird front I added two species not only to the site list but to the whole survey being Cormorant and Hobby. Hobby is the 9th species of raptor I have seen during the surveys.

2 Response to "I would walk 500 miles..."

Richard Cobden Says:

I have heard one of the reasons Dwarf Elder got its name was from the story that it would supress growth in children, apparently poor families would feed it to their children in the hope they would be stunted & they could be sold to the travelling circus as performing dwarves! Brilliant!

More in Sussex Wild Flowers by Mary Briggs

Graeme Lyons Says:

I had heard something like that from Nigel actually but was never convinced that he wasn't winding me up. I shall have to do some research as I feel like I have missed a trick there!

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