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More Wild Adventures

3rd May 2020 @ 6:06am – by Adrian Leighton
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More Wild Adventures by Adrian Leighton

After my notes on the wild flowers blooming along the canal towpath, I thought I would have a turn around Turnpike Field see what I could find. I chose our first really rainy day for a while but at least I had no problem with social distancing as I was the only person out for a walk that afternoon.

The field(s) have only had a cursory survey by Cheshire Wildlife so I was keen to see what has emerged this Spring. The fields have a variety of habitats including hedgerows, pasture land, river banks and floating bog so there is great scope for a variety of plants. After the winter rain and April sun everywhere was very lush.

Beginning at the gate on the Whitchurch Road, the hedgerow along beside the canal contained a number of usual suspects in flower including Cowparsley, the Meadow and Bulbous varieties of Buttercup, Garlic Mustard, Dandelions, Daisy and a magnificent Gorse bush in full bloom (just to show kissing isn't totally out of fashion!). Walking down the field to cross the stream I passed Lords-and-ladies dancing in the rain. Thankfully there is now a dry path into the lower field. Walking up towards the canal, the pinkish red flowers of Red Campion struck the eye.

Turning down by one of the new ponds and looking down towards the boundary stream a blue haze of English Bluebells came into sight. Continuing down, the ground became wetter as I reached the floating bog and there right in the middle is glowing golden patch of Marsh Marigolds (see picture). Although still damp the path down to the bridge at least now is passable and as well as Lesser Celandines, now nearing the end of their flowering, is a large patch of Ransom or Wild Garlic with the distinctive white flowers and smell.

Walking back along the path are Lady's Smock or Cuckcooflower, which is my flower of this Spring after the great comeback along the canal towpath. The walk back along the stream bank and up the hill the little blue flowers of the Forget-me-nots stand out, whilst up along the Green Lane hedge more Wild Garlic and Common Speedwell, another little blue flower
were seen.

But by this time I was thoroughly wet and my observation enthusiasm had somewhat waned. However there had been sufficient of interest and delight to make me determined to do another adventure around the field perhaps on a sunnier day when I am sure even more will catch the eye

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