Speedy!

Speedwell may sometimes be regarded as a weed in formal gardens, but it is currently making a really nice display at the side of the track at the entrance to Harridge Wood West.

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Ramson amongst the Ferns

It has been one of the driest springs ever, with almost no rain in April and early May.  However this doesn’t seem to have effected the usual fantastic display of Ramsons.  The last of them are still flowering amongst the Ferns on the north slopes of Harridge Wood West.

Yellow Angels

Just as the Bluebell flowers start to fade the golden glow of Yellow Archangel (Lamiastrum galeobdolon) takes over.

I found this dense clump flowering on the Ridge track near Harridge Wood Hole.

Dieback, an unfolding tragedy

Three years ago we heard the first confirmed report of Chalara Ash dieback in a mature tree near Shepton Mallet, and have been monitoring the local woods since.

Two years ago we had yet to see any signs, but last year many Ash (Fraxinus excelsior) trees in the woods started to show the first signs of dieback.

This year it is now very clear that with dead tops of the trees all over.  There are a few Ash not showing any signs yet, so we will continue to watch closely.

This Chalara dieback disease of ash trees caused by a fungus called Hymenoscyphus fraxineus.

 

Green Oak

I really love the new leaves of the Oak (Quercus robur).

Starting with a red tinge they quickly change to a to lovely shiny light lime green.  It may be one of the last trees to get its leaves, but it is well worth the wait.

 

Yellow jewels

The Ramson flowering is nearly over for another year, but just inside Harridge Wood West they are still out.

Bright Buttercup flowers now peak like jewels though the sheets of white flowers, making a really nice display.

Buttercups growing through the last of the Ramson flowers
Buttercups growing through the last of the Ramson flowers