Following on from the walk at Cleeve Hill in July we ventured forth onto Alney Island Nature Reserve in Gloucester. Quite a different type of habitat, much of it influenced by flooding but also areas with calcareous species.
Four of us set off from the reserve car park and only just the other side of the gate into reserve were looking at Willowherb, Tall Melilot (a member of the pea family), Knapweed and St John’s wort. Again the aim was to introduce some of the characteristics of the plants to aid identification. All together we were able to identify over 60 species as well as 8 species of butterfly. Alongside the cycle path we came across some damp grassland plants such as Gypsywort and Figwort, plus an area nearby with plants more associated with limestone grassland such as Common Centaury and Ploughman’s Spikenard.
It proved to be a fruitful morning in terms of plants and just goes to show that you don’t necessarily need to venture far to come across a wide range of species.
We hope to include some more of these walks in 2016 and also another Winter Tree ID event later in the year.