Flowers on Greensand Ridge


Today, instead of doing a walk from my home in Kensworth, I decided to drive to Ampthill and do a walk along a section of the Greensand Ridge Walk. The reason for doing so was that I thought I might see some different flowers on the Greensand Ridge, compared to all the chalk hills I’ve been walking recently. I also remembered that there was a nature reserve on the ridge near Ampthill, just east of the ruins of Houghton House (see Day 3 of my John Bunyan Trail journal for photos of the ruins and of the extensive views from the Greensand Ridge).

The nature reserve, Kingswood, was disappointing in that I didn’t see any new flowers, but it was a long and enjoyable walk around the woodland. There were also some meadows at the foot of the ridge, but these were also disappointing from the point of seeing wildflowers. I did see Marbled White and Ringlet butterflies though. I also saw a Buzzard as I looked out from the edge of the wood at one point, where there was a panoramic view along the Greensand Ridge and over Marston Vale at its foot.

I then walked along the ridge, through Ampthill Park and on along through Millbrook, as far as Jackdaw Hill. I did see two new wildflowers, Bugloss and Weld – the former likes grassy, sandy places, so my decision to look for flowers on a different type of soil at least partially worked out. I also got some better photos of other flowers that I may use to replace the ones on my website – certainly I got my best photo yet of Red Campion, and I might use the White Campion shots too.

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