Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Twigs!

Braving the possibility of a few showers (which didn't appear, thankfully), Malcolm and I were joined this morning by our good friend Jayne.  We took a long walk around Shipley Park, past Mapperley Reservoir and on to Cinder Hill, Osborne's Pond and Shipley Lake before returning via the Bee Orchid site.
Amid the Ox-eye Daisies and Bee Orchids were a number of Tufted Vetch plants (Vicia cracca) in full bloom.  Another member of the Pea family, they are very common around these parts.  Sometimes known as Cow Vetch, it climbs among its neighbours by the use of numerous tendrils.  Tufted Vetch is a very useful plant, grown as a fodder crop and as a soil improver due to it's ability to fix nitrogen into the soil.  Pet Budgies are rather partial to it too!
Creeping about the stony surface of the old car park, White Stonecrop (Sedum album) is making a good show of itself too.
 The small, starry, pink-flushed flowers are held in clusters above the tiny, fleshy leaves.
Heading for home, we had to negotiate a rather tricky, steep bank which can be difficult to clamber down at the best of times, but when the ground is dry and dusty, it becomes very tricky to hold your feet.  Despite warnings from Jayne (known affectionately as Twiglette) not to take her picture, I couldn't resist the temptation.  Malcolm also managed to get in on the picture as he also skidded his way down the hill.
All in all, a good day.  Cheers Jayne!
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