Thursday, 18 July 2013

Enchanting

Our hot-and-bothered walk this morning, took us up and round Shipley Hill.  Warmer even than yesterday and with less of a breeze to cool our fevered brows, we came across a large stand of Enchanter''s Nightshade (Circaea lutetiana).  Related to the Evening Primrose I mentioned a few days ago, the diminutive flowers are held above the leaves on slender stalks giving them the look of candelabra.  Native to most of Europe and as far north as Siberia, they like to keep their roots in the moist, cool soil under the woodland canopy.
Further along, and the Great Burdock (Arctium lappa) is beginning to open it's flowers.  The flower heads are surrounded by thousands of tiny hook-like appendages which catch hold of the ridges of your fingers if you try to touch it.
More great things to come and the Great Willowherb (Epilobium hirsutum) is also coming into flower and adding it's bright colour to the hedgerows.
As part of the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust's work to improve the nature reserve, a couple of large, wooden sculptures have appeared adjacent to the footpath.  One - of a hedgehog - is to be found skulking in the trees, but this handsome sculpture of a mole, peeping out of the ground, is more prominently placed and looks rather good.
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