Thursday, 22 May 2014

Buttercup Petals

Did you know that you can calculate the age of your meadow by counting number of buttercup flowers with more than 5 petals? Select 100 flowers at random and count the ones that have mutated to have 6 or more petals. I tried it in our orchard and got...none... This is not to say the technique doesn't work, just that our orchard is not untouched meadow land. See an article about the research that established the method here.
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Botany Outing: There is an outing to see the orchids of the Eperon Barré de Murat on Sunday 25 May. Meet at 14.30 in front of the church in Ferrière Larçon. The outing is organised by the Association de Botanique et de Mycologie de Sainte Maure de Touraine.
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Orchids in the Claise Valley: Despite the rain yesterday (which was steady and heavy in the late afternoon, but lighter earlier in the day) I took a pair of anglo-australian clients out on an orchid walk in the morning. He was a keen nature photographer and was very pleased with the orchid score, even though I did have to act as umbrella roadie. Here is a list of what we saw:

Pyramidal Orchid (Fr. Orchis pyramidal) Anacamptis pyramidalis
Narrow-leafed Helleborine (Fr. Céphalanthère à longues feuilles) Cephalanthera longifolia
Red Helleborine (Fr. Céphalanthère rouge) Cephalanthera rubra
Small-leafed Helleborine (Fr. Epipactis à petites feuilles) Epipactis microphylla
Common Fragrant Orchid (Fr. Orchis moucheron) Gymnadenia conopsea
Violet Limodore (Fr. Limodore à feuilles avortées) Limodorum abortivum
Common Twayblade (Fr. Listère ovale) Neottia ovata
Bee Orchid (Fr. Ophrys abeille) Ophrys apifera
Fly Orchid (Fr. Ophrys mouche) Ophrys insectifera
Early Spider Orchid (Fr. Ophrys araignée) Ophrys sphegodes
Man Orchid (Fr. Orchis homme-pendu) Orchis anthropophora
Military Orchid (Fr. Orchis militaire) Orchis militaris
Lady Orchid (Fr. Orchis pourpre) Orchis purpurea
Monkey Orchid (Fr. Orchis singe) Orchis simia
Lady x Monkey Hybrid Orchis x angusticruris
Greater Butterfly Orchid (Fr. Orchis verdâtre) Platanthera chlorantha
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Yesterday's Quiz: PG is the winner because she got in first, but Carolyn and RiF get points too.

3 comments:

  1. "There is an outing to see the orchids of the Eperon Barré de Murat..."

    But rememem-remememember to take your climbing ropes and axes for the ascent!!
    The new way in isn't completed yet...
    We would have liked to go...
    but have signed up for Jean Pelle's walk at Chaumassay instead.

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  2. Tim: Then expect to see the species on the list above. I take it this means you are not coming on the bouchon?

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  3. No bouchon for us this year...
    Gytha's hood has rotted.
    The material looks to have been eaten by fungus and lichen [the fungal bit...]...
    Quite a mess in fact...
    And Magrat's oil switch is playing up...
    which means taking the engine cowling off again...
    which means having room to park her in the barn....
    which means building the utility and atelier frames first...
    and that can't start until we've finished setting up the potager...
    and...
    the list goes on!
    So Magrat will be in and out of the village to keep her running...
    and Gytha will only be out in very fine weather...
    ie: NOT this w/e.
    'Tis very annoying....
    we have a spare hood for Magrat...
    her old one...
    but I can't fit that to Gytha...
    different fittings!!

    And it is Marc Fleury leading the walk we've signed up for... not M.Pelle.
    Have a good bouchon, tho'.

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