Close up

At a first glance, you might think plants were all dying back now but looking closely there are many flowers still among the seed-heads. Here are some from the verge between Ivybridge station and Bittaford. Advertisements

To the station and back

A poppy near the church in Bittaford, and some more poppy buds and capsules further on. All along the verge there are patches of zigzag clover, which is less common than white and red clovers but is plentiful here. Note the tapering, pointed stipules and widely spaced brightly coloured petals. Another interesting flower is agrimony, its tall…

South Brent island

There were loads of common red soldier beetles on hogweed and yarrow at the Island.   This is a broad centurion, a type of soldier fly. They are called soldier flies because of their brightly coloured ‘uniforms’. Broad centurion males have bronze abdomens, like this one. Females have blue-green abdomens. This moth is a beautiful golden Y….

April on Bittaford Road

Early purple orchids are flowering at the junction near Ash Rosettes. Beautiful, but far fewer than last year. Cow parsley, hogweed, and garlic mustard (Jack-by-the-hedge) are giving the verges some height now. An early specimen of red clover, rather chewed.

October 1st

In the vegetable patch, plenty of weeds are enjoying the autumn sunshine. Daisies, foxgloves, catsear and nipplewort are still in flower in the grounds of Moorhaven while the hedgerows sport a mix of late specimens of summer flowers, like campions and rough chervil, and autumn flowering cyclamens, marjoram and water pepper. The cyclamen is an…

Things that look like cow parsley part 3

Hogweed is at its most handsome this month, and is joined by greater burnet saxifrage. GBS has white flowers like a delicate cow parsley but is easily distinguished by its leaves, which are glossy dark green. According to my flower books, it is not particularly common across the UK but it is growing in the…


I counted over 90 different species currently flowering between Moorhaven and Green Lane, starting with the weeds in our garden (1-36), progressing to Moorhaven communal gardens where Perforate St John’s Wort (37) and Dark Mullein (38) were growing in a weedy border (they could have been planted there originally), and then via Wrangaton Road to the…

Things that look like cow parsley, part 2

Cow parsley is almost over and is gradually being superseded by rough chervil. Rough chervil has similar flowers, and bracteoles but no bracts as with cow parsley. Its distinctive characteristics are hairy stems that are often purple – cow parsley stems are smooth and green – and drooping flower buds. Ground elder is dominating the…

March inventory

Linda lent me her camera, which seemed a good excuse to take stock of what is growing between Moorhaven and Green Lane this month. On March 12th 2016, there were the first flowers of golden saxifrage and pink purslane, with a solitary purple and yellow flower of ivy-leaved toadflax that was a bit too small for the…


Looking further afield, found dog’s mercury, burnet saxifrage, hogweed, gorse and common comfrey already in flower