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SNOW BOTANY

by Sally MacKintosh - 17:47 on 28 January 2013

Five intrepid bots explored the Binscarth Woods for the first signs of spring in the snow last Wednesday.  The weather was wintry but the snow made for cleaner walking and the sun did shine.  We even ate our packed lunches sitting on the dry stone dykes up near the main house.
Indeed the spring signs were there.  Much in evidence, although not in flower, were the large carpets of pink purslane.  The bulbs were well up and golden saxifrage was found not far from being in bloom.  Evergreen ferns were safely tucked in among the tree roots and banks of the burn.  Trees were still very tightly budded but displaying beautifully coloured lichens, mosses and fungi.
Three unseasonable but not altogether surprising flowers were found – dandelion, hogweed and whin or gorse. “When gorse is out of bloom then kissing is out of fashion” – meaning you will find it in flower somewhere!  Among other plants determined to get above the snow was one of the wild garlic family.  Another foxed us with not much more than the leaf to go by but we are working on it.  There being quite a number of garden escapes in Binscarth we might be on the wrong track completely.  We aim to keep an eye on the woods throughout the year.  Sal

Well Spotted Row of Bots! - photo by Caroline Melody

Lunch in the January Sunshine

Binscarth Woods


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