Around Harewood Forest in late April

It has been much colder than usual this year. The bluebells are two or three weeks behind last year, and still fail to show in the woodland, yet optimism fills the Hampshire air and a few over-wintering butterflies are fluttering.

David Beeson, 30 April 2021

Our garden bluebells, in the open, are flowering ahead of those a few metres away in the woodland. For wild bluebells it is best to explore the southern edge of Harewood and at John Lewis’s nursey near Longstock.
The oak tree buds are slowly opening. This is when the moth and butterfly eggs hatch. The young insects will feed on the non-toxic foliage until the tannin level increases and stops further feeding. These larvae will feed the young blue tits, and their like, and they the predators.
Wild cherry trunk on the left, the rest are silver birch.
Young woodmouse.
Most of the silver birch trees are well past their prime. This one is dead but providing resources to the decay fungi and a surface for mosses, lichens and algae.
Who says that tree trunks are brown?
No sign of our dormice yet. They must be around but are avoiding my wildlife camera … not so brown rats!
The cowslips are in their prime. You will find that they have the same mixture of pin-eyed and thrum-eyed flowers as do the primroses. PLANTLIFE are running a survey of cowslip flowers. Look up their website. A simple citizen-science project.

Tulipa saxatilis, a native of Crete, but flowering in Forest Edge. Yes, those are the wild-type colours.

For INDEX of 100 nwhwildlife articles see:

One thought on “Around Harewood Forest in late April

  1. We have amazing bluebells, dark blue swaths in the forests….and wild garlic for soups and stews, it’s lovely foraging.
    I wish Michael liked sorrel ( for lemony soup) and Alexanders used by the Romans to keep their bloods red and munch on while marching.I could use that at my hospital!!!!
    It’s so windy here and stuff blowing all over the garden.
    Hope to see you soon


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