Tag Archives: Lesser celandine

Orchid in flower 700

Swarming bees steal the show on this year’s spring flowers nature walk

On Saturday 22 April I led this year’s spring flower nature walk to Hillhouse wood.  The forecast was for OK weather, so we hoped that a decent number of people would come along.  As 2 pm approached, numbers swelled, and by the time it was time to start it was clear that Chris Stephenson’s publicity machine had been on overdrive. Forty seven people were present, which was the largest group I can remember.  I was going to be doing a lot of shouting (no change there, some would say). Continue reading

TrackaTree Lesser celandines 2017 12 April

Are Wood anemones more sensitive plants than Lesser celandines?

In my last post I showed a chart of my TrackaTree phenology data for Wood anemones for 2014-2017. As the chart below shows, the timing of flowering of the Lesser celandines has varied less over these four years, with only 13 days between the earliest 2014 and the latest, 2016.  Continue reading

Trackatree Wood anemones chart 4 April 2017

The Wood anemones in Hillhouse wood vary markedly in when they flower, according to my TrackaTree data

I my last post I explained how I decided to chart the data I’ve been collecting for the TrackaTree phenology project, so see if it has any interesting stories to tell. I wanted to look at the variation within the same species between the years, and also to see there was any variation in the relative timing of the different species between years.  Continue reading

165 Bluebell cropped

In which I decide to see if the data I’ve been collecting for the TrackaTree phenology project actually tells us anything

The thought recently struck me that the data I’ve been collecting in Hillhouse Wood for the TrackaTree phenology project might enable me to look for any noteworthy differences between years. (Phenology is the study of how the timings of the seasons are affected by variations in weather.  Continue reading

165 Bluebell cropped

The Track a Tree phenology project continues for a third year in Hillhouse wood

As keen readers of this blog, and my Mum, will know, for the last two years I have done field work for this project.  This involves visiting some specific trees (four in my case) more or less weekly throughout the spring to record data about what is happening.  ‘Happening’ stuff involves the stage of bud burst and leaf break, and the numbers of specific species of flower that are showing underneath the tree.  By capturing this data at different sites in the UK, the project enables differences in the timing of ‘Spring’ to be rigorously identified across the country and between years.  It ran for two years to support a PhD project at the University of Edinburgh, and I’ve been glad to hear that it is continuing for a third year, at least, even though Christine has gained her qualification. Continue reading

A record ‘tally’ for the 2016 wild flower walk in Hillhouse wood

Each Spring the Friends of Hillhouse Wood organise two guided walks – one to look at the Bluebells, and a Dawn Chorus one.  These are normally 2-3 weeks apart, to match each one to when its subjects are at their best.  However this year things were different, and for the first time ever we ran both walks on the same weekend. Continue reading

The world of Hillhouse wood is getting weirder

On Thursday (24 March) I popped down to the wood to see if the numbers of flowers out around my TrackaTree trees had changed at all, now that the nights are getting less cold.  They had not, but elsewhere in the wood the Wood anemones are starting to come out, with smaller numbers of Lesser celandines.  This is what we would expect to see at about this time of year.

04 Lesser celandine cropped    06 Wood anemone

Continue reading

Stories that flowers flowering in March have to tell

Wild daffodil

172 Wild daffodil cropped

True Wild daffodils are only now found in a restricted number of woods, mainly in the west of the country.  It is an indicator of ancient woodland and grassland, often found growing with plants such as Dog’s mercury, wood anemone, Primrose, Cowslip, Lesser celandine, Ivy, and violets. Continue reading

The TrackaTree phenology project is up and running again in Hillhouse Wood

So – the wind has veered to the north, wintery squalls are scudding across the sky, and thus the obvious thing to do is a Trackatree field visit to see how Spring is getting on.  And I can report, with no little excitement, that things are stirring in the TrackaTree parts of Hillhouse Wood.  Continue reading

Stories that flowers flowering in February have to tell

Lesser celandine

04 Lesser celandine cropped

The leaves of Lesser Celandine are high in Vitamin C, so were used to prevent scurvy.  Young leaves were either boiled or used as a salad – despite the fact that they contain toxins, which become stronger as the leaves age.  Lesser Celandine was used to treat haemorrhoids, in fact it used to be called ‘Pilewort’.  This was because the plant’s knobbly underground tubers looked like piles.  Continue reading