Friday, 29 May 2015

Monad Recording Meeting at Withcote

Our third meeting this year recording plants in the under-recorded monads that the BSBI have asked us to look at will be held on Wednesday 3rd June from 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. The meeting is suitable for both beginners and experienced botanists and we will stay until it is too dark to record and then go to a local pub.

Challenging cover crop plants!

We will be recording in SK8005 at Withcote, between Owston and Launde Park Woods. This monad is mostly pasture and arable fields with hedgerows, ponds and a stream. The focus will be on arable field margins, grasslands and old hedgerows which may have some interesting species and challenging cover crop plants.

Hedgerow ground flora
Meet in the wide layby on the bend in the road from Tilton to Braunston (Oakham Road/The Wisp) at SK808059. Please ensure that you park so as not obstruct the entrances to adjacent fields. If the layby is full, the verge opposite can be used, but be careful, as the bend in the road has fast traffic. If you would like more details or to arrange car-sharing, please email or phone me: contact details are in the group field meetings document on the menu bar.


Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Dates for your diary

Chinese wild pear at Hammond Arboretum
Image courtesy R. Hall
As well as the local group meetings planned for this year, and the tetrad recording that many of us are doing for Atlas 2020, here are a few more dates next month for your diary:

1. Kate Moore has been in touch to tell us about a garden open day at Long Close, Woodhouse Eaves, on Saturday 13th June 2015 - 10.30am to 4.30pm. This is organised by the Charnwood Group of the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust and is a Summer Open Day at Long Close Gardens, Main Street, Woodhouse Eaves, Leicestershire, LE12 8RZ. Kate says "Long Close is a garden of exotic trees, luxuriant rhododendrons, huge magnolias, terraced lawns, lily ponds and herbaceous borders. There are also two unimproved wildlife meadows with orchids and wild flowers.  Please come along to enjoy these beautiful gardens and meadows. Admission: Adults £4.00. Child 50p and must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Sorry, no dogs allowed except guide dogs". She also asks if anyone would be interested in leading a botany walk for the public? If so please email Kate.

Yunnan crab at Hammond Arboretum
Image courtesy R. Hall
2. Rosemary Hall has been in touch to tell us about an event she is organising on behalf of the local branch of the Society of Biology. She says "We are going to visit the Hammond Arboretum in Market Harborough on the evening of Tuesday 16th June and we should like to invite non-members who are interested as well.  Light refreshments from 6.30pm, talk and tour included. I have made a preliminary visit and it is quite delightful there.  It would be so nice to have some keen botanists along!" If interested, there are more details on this flyer on our Google Drive, including Rosemary's contact details.

3. Cath Lovatt and the team at Attenborough Nature Reserve in Notts have been in touch to tell us about their Bioblitz on 19th-20th June. Cath has twisted my arm to venture just over the county boundary and lead a field session at the reserve on the Saturday morning (20th June) to record as many species as we can for the Bioblitz. I'm hoping that a few more VC55 people will join me. Cath says "There will be other experts in bird-watching, butterflies, hoverflies, etc doing their thing too". If interested, just turn up on the day or email me for more info.

Posted by Louise

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Local group meeting to see spring flowers!

Bugle - we should see this on 13th May
Image: R. Parry
Well, we've had a few local group meetings already this year to look at mosses, and some of us have already adopted a tetrad and started recording for Atlas2020, but now that it's May, buds and leaves are unfurling all over the place, so it's time for the VC55 botany group to go out plant-spotting and recording what we find.  

Our first group meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, 13th May, starting at 6.30pm and going on until it's too dark to see or we have all had enough! The location has been suggested by BSBI Central as it is in an under-recorded part of the county - it's immediately south of Stanton under Bardon and it's in the grid square SK4609. 
Cuckoo-flower should be present too.
Image: R. Parry
This meeting is being organised and led by Russell Parry who says "This could be a good meeting for less experienced surveyors because the species encountered will largely be those encountered in every tetrad in vc55! However, there are a couple of horse grazed, ridge and furrow fields which may offer a few interesting challenges. There will be a few arable weeds and it will be interesting to look at the progress of some fairly recent National Forest planting. There is a choice of pubs for later refreshment!"

Here are the access and parking details: Park at SK46570976 on grass at the bend in Thornton Lane/Stanton Lane about 100 metres east of its junction with Main Street. Please avoid blocking the field gates.

You can email Russell if you would like more details or to arrange car-sharing, or you can phone him on 0116 273 7189 or, on the day, 07594 302127.