Wildflower walk to Totternhoe

(Entry copied from my WAB blog)

Friday 4/7/08

Usually when I go for a walk, I photograph only wildflowers that I don’t recognise or maybe those that I’m seeing for the first time this year. Today I decided to do a long walk (10-11 miles) that I knew would be good for wildflowers, and to photograph or record all the different wildflowers that I came across.

Starting from my home in Kensworth, I walked down the lane to Church End (the old part of the village) – along here I saw: Nipplewort, Herb Robert, Russian Comfrey, Agrimony, Field Bindweed, Hedge Woundwort.

I then followed the lengthy path round the back of the huge chalk quarry to Dunstable Downs: Pyramidal Orchid, Common Spotted Orchid, Yellow-wort, Self-heal, White Bryony, Field Scabious, Dog Rose, Wood Avens, Poppy, St John’s Wort, Rosebay Willowherb, Scarlet Pimpernel, Bladder Campion and Hedge Bindweed.

I walked along the Downs and descended the hill to Dunstable: Lady’s Bedstraw, Meadow Cranesbill, Common Fumitory, Common Rock-rose and Wild Mignonette.

I then followed a green lane and a Bridleway to the hamlet of Sewell: Common Mallow, Large Bindweed, White Dead-nettle, Opium Poppy, Common Field Speedwell, Greater Knapweed, Field Pansy, White Campion, Musk Mallow, Purple Toadflax and Borage.

I passed a disused chalk quarry, and continued on a green lane towards Totternhoe where I passed a Nature Reserve in a disused quarry – Man Orchid, Common Twayblade and Sainfoin.

I continued, and stopped for lunch by a second reserve at Totternhoe Knolls: Woody Nightshade, Cuckoo-pint, Nettle-leaved Bellflower, Clustered Bellflower, Germander Speedwell, Yellow Rattle and Squinancywort.

I then walked through Totternhoe and along a lane (Common Toadflax) back to the Downs and returned home via Whipsnade (Enchanter’s Nightshade, Yarrow) and Whipsnade Heath (Foxgloves, Dark Mullein).

I’m not claiming to have seen anything special, or an unusually high number of wildflowers, I just thought it would be interesting to show what’s about in ‘my patch’ at the moment.

I’ve obviously just mentioned the first occurrence of each flower. The Man Orchid was the one I reported here a few weeks ago.

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