Thursday, 28 May 2009

Ox-Eyes and Birds feet

Tall and elegant flowers dotted amongst the grasses of our walk this morning - Ox-Eye Daisys (Leucanthemum vulgare previously called Chrysanthemum leucanthemum). Sometimes known as Marguerite, Moon Daisy or Dog Daisy.

These blooms were covered in small moths which I am still trying to identify - I will get back to you on that!

The children's game 'He loves me, he loves me not' originally came from a French game using this flower, known as 'effeuiller la marguerite'.
Apparently, the unopened flower buds, when marinated, can be used in cooking as you would use capers.

Growing along side these statuesque flowers, were the more diminutive blooms of the Birds-Foot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatus).

Called Bird's-Foot because of the arrangement of it's seed pods when fruiting, it is a member of the Pea family and a very useful forage crop for livestock. Excellent as a part of silage and hay and a source of nectar for many insects. As a legume, it also assists in soil improvement as it helps lock nitrogen into the soil.
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