West Hoathly

Field meeting reports

Meeting date: 2 April 2011

(Leader: Rita Hemsley)

The first field meeting of the year was well attended. We divided into three groups for the morning. In Courtland Wood in TQ33Q Tony found a large well-established patch of Scilla bythinica (Turkish Squill) and some planted and self-sown conifers.  Several interesting naturalised plants were in Highbrook churchyard including Cardamine heptaphylla (Pinnate Coralroot), found by Helen and later confirmed.  23 new records were added for this tetrad.  The group who visited TQ33K added seventeen new records and found a patch of Narcissus pseudonarcissus (Daffodil), which the owner of a nearby house told them had been there 28 years ago when they moved in.  In TQ33L the recorders added 25 new records including Crataegus x media (Hybrid Hawthorn) on Chiddinglye Farm.  After filling all the available picnic tables for lunch at West Hoathly (which I am reliably informed included ostrich sandwiches, did I hear that right?) we left in one group to record in TQ33R.  We had a successful afternoon on a route that took us through Sharpthorne, giving us some garden escapes, and Shagswell Wood with its ancient woodland indicators, and added 49 new records.  Arthur found Viola x bavarica (Hybrid Dog-violet) and Crataegus laevigata (Midland Hawthorn), but the highlight was walking back through West Hoathly and finding large quantities of Montia fontana (Blinks) on the roadside verges.  In all 114 new records for the start of the recording season.