Tuesday, 27 June 2017

More Wild Flowers

The highways and byways are still full of Summer flowers and their associated insects. Unfortunately, the very hot weather last week, has shortened the life of some of the more delicate flowers. Among the worst hit have been the Bee Orchids, so when Malcolm and I set out to check on them yesterday, we had to search long and hard to find any. Those Bee Orchids still with flowers, are looking a little tatty now.
Growing among the gravels of the old Theme Park car-parks, these little orchids seem to thrive in the seemingly hostile conditions. They are certainly not alone either. Close by, we found lots of brilliantly coloured, star-shaped flowers belonging to the Yellow-wort.
Much more imposing and definitely more dangerous to get close to, are the Spear Thistles. Their wonderful, mauve flower heads are also beginning to open now.
The thistle head is made of many hundreds of individual flowers, each of which was producing pollen, looking like little dusty tips.
Along the old railway lines of the 'Farm Walk' the other day, we encountered another statuesque plant. This time, the stems and leaves were covered, not with harsh spikes like the thistle, but with soft downy hairs. Held high above the leaves, the bright yellow flowers were beginning to open. They belong to the Great Mullein.
Above our heads as we walk around the countryside, we have noticed the flowers of the Common Lime Trees. In their case, it isn't the flowers which first attract the attention, but their heavy, sweet scent. Closer inspection reveals a lovely little flower, but it is their glorious perfume which fills the senses.
The footpath around Mapperley Reservoir, is dominated right now, by the blue flowers of the Meadow Cranesbill. There are thousands of them...
Always good to see in full bloom, it is unusual to find truly blue wildflowers at all, let alone so many of them.
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