DWT Botany Group – New Year Plant Hunt January 2nd 2017

pstranney DWT Botany Group, News


The DWT Botany Group had its first meeting of 2017 on the Durham Coast at Nose’s Point on  January 2nd, where twelve well wrapped-up members undertook the BSBI New Years Plant Hunt. http://www.bsbi.org.uk/new_year_plant_hunt.html

This plant survey takes place between January 1st and 4th each year. Conducted over 3 hours on any one of the first 4 days of the year the rules are simple; find as many naturally occurring plants in flower as you can. In 2016 the group visited DWT’s Low Barns Nature Reserve and found a very respectful 17 flowering species.

During the 2016 New Year Plant Hunt, 653 species were recorded in bloom between 1st and 4th January nationally. The books say there should only be around 20-30 flowering at this time! 865 botanists took part from 108 vice-counties across Britain and Ireland; between them, they submitted 9,265 records.

This year the Botany Group found 14 species in flower. Well done! The results are shown below.

 

TABLE 1                List of plant species found by the DWT Botany Group during the Nose’s Point New Years Plant Hunt January 2nd 2017

Photo reference Common Name Scientific Name
1 Gorse Ulex europaeus
2 Common Ragwort Senecio jacobaea
3 Annual Meadow-grass Poa annua
4 Daisy Bellis perennis
5 Red Campion Silene dioica
6 Ivy Hedera helix
7 Smooth Sow-thistle Sonchus oleraceus
8 Cock’s-foot grass Dactylis glomerata
9 Yellow-wort Blackstonia perfoliata
10 Yarrow Achillea millefolium
11 Creeping buttercup Ranunculus repens
12 Meadow buttercup Ranunculus acris
13 Tall melilot Melilotus altissimus
14 Winter heliotrope Petasites fragrans

 

nyph-map

MAP 1 – The route walked by DWT Botany Group and location of flowering plants

1. Gorse

1. Gorse

 

Common Ragwort

2. Common Ragwort

5. Red campion
5. Red campion

6. Ivy

6. Ivy

7. Smooth Sow-thistle

9. Yellow-wort
9. Yellow-wort

12. Meadow buttercup

12. Meadow buttercup

13. Flower of Tall melilot (above left), Tall melilot (above right)

13. Flower of Tall melilot (above left), Tall melilot (above right)

14. Winter heliotrope

14. Winter heliotrope

Next up:

2017 programme

Please look out later this week for an email with the (almost) final version of the programme which has lots of botany for lots of people! It started with the NYPH and continues on …..

Tuesday 24 January, 1000-1300 at Trimdon Grange

On this occasion we will be looking to identify wild plants that are not yet in flower, so closely observing other, vegetative, features to track down our species. Not easy, but not impossible either. Of course, it will also be interesting to see how many plants are in flower, 3 weeks on.

More details on this event will be emailed next week.