While I was walking around Cardiff Bay yesterday, not only was I keeping an eye on the sky for birds, I was also looking down a lot, trying to find as many wildflowers in bloom as possible for the New Year Plant Hunt – to be honest, it’s amazing I didn’t fall over, with my head bobbing up and down like one of those nodding dogs you used to see in the back windows of cars (some of you may be too young to remember those!).
The New Year Plant Hunt actually goes on for four days, from the 1st to the 4th, so you’ve still time to join in. The event is run by the BSBI, the Botanical Society of Britain & Ireland, and aims to ‘find out how our wildflowers are responding to changes in autumn and winter weather patterns’. You can read all about it on their website, and follow along on the social media of your choice.
I was surprised and delighted with my haul from yesterday, finding 28 (!) wildflowers in bloom. My tentative identifications are: a thistle species; Common ragwort; Winter heliotrope; Red clover; a Gorse species; Daisy; one of the Cat’s-ears (I think); a member of the carrot family, perhaps one of the parsleys; Bristly oxtongue; Red valerian; Hemlock water dropwort; a dandelion species; Black nightshade; a sowthistle species; a mayweed, I think; a buttercup species; Bramble; Sea radish; a hawkweed species; Groundsel; Petty spurge (with a rust fungus); Narrow-leaved bittercress; White melilot; Yarrow; Oxeye daisy; Common kapweed; Shepherd’s-purse; and Herb Robert.