Meeting date: 20 May 2000
(Leader: Pat Donovan, Margaret Hanton)
Those members who braved the track to the meeting-place down in the forest were rewarded with mugs of coffee or tea brewed on a camp-fire by Alastair & Margaret Hanton, who own a part of the forest. In addition they provided maps for everyone and even chairs to sit on for lunch!
The morning was spent alongside, and occasionally in, the Willingford Stream looking for Festuca altissima (Wood Fescue), which was eventually found by Paul Maurice*. Several clumps of Lathraea clandestina (Purple Toothwort) were seen. This species has spread considerably downstream from Cox’s Mill where it was first recorded. Rumour has it that a one-time owner of the mill was a former curator of Kew. Was it introduced by him?
After lunch, the Hantons led the way to the Convallaria majalis (Lily-of-the-Valley) site, which is now a patch ca.25 ft square and spreading. It was introduced (?) early in the 20th century by the owner of Glazier’s Forge. A walk up a wide damp ride produced several sedges, including Carex pallescens (Pale Sedge) and C.viridula ssp.oedocarpa (Common Yellow-sedge). A trek back to camp down a shady ghyll with many clumps of Scirpus sylvaticus (Wood Club-rush) ended with grateful thanks to the Hantons for their hospitality.
*About 60 more plants were found on sandstone rocks upstream on a subsequent visit by PH & HMP.