Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Early Flowering Times This Spring

Around here the day that the trees start to show green (so I tell people) is 17th April and the day that they are fully green is 17th May (or 17th-26th May)

Here, for the records, are notes on what I have seen in flowers and in leaf. Many plants are three weeks ahead of what we had last year.

This year by the 17th April the trees were definitely just starting to go green - maybe I should have looked harder on the 15th April. I will put in some photos that I took then, later. 

But by 24th April the sycamore trees were almost fully out (though still light green). A view towards sycamore trees looked almost like mid summer. But a view towards ash and oak still looked like winter!

Today at the Ash and Oak tree next to Miss Hilary's cottage (Sandhills) the oak tree was definitely coming into leaf whilst the ash was still only flowering. (So we are going to get dry weather)

By 24th April the lilac was just coming out, and horse-chestnut were in full bloom as are apple trees and bird cherry. Usually they don't come out till May

The beech and birch are half way out.

On Sun 24th I went to look at the Spring Cinquefoil which is fully out and doing well on the limestone grassland - though the grassland looks very dry. The Tormentil is not yet out.  I have pictures from mid May last year of us looking at the Spring Cinquefoil. There was lots of cowslips out but I did not notice Early purple orchids

The Purple Saxifrage was out in mid-March this year on Pen y Ghent (I am told). By 9th April it was certainly over, as I noticed on the BBS moss trip.

The Yellow Mountain-pansies are out, and Violets (Viola riviniana), in a field above Stainforth.

I noticed some Cuckoo flower out in the Middle school Playing field on our Lichens Day.. very early. there has been a lot since then in the field opposite me - two weeks ago - presumably no grazing.

Early Scurvy grass (Cochlearia danica) has been out for over a month but there is lots of it now. It is spreading along the road on the road path opposite the ex-Youth Hostel (where is has been for several years) to the path at almost to Stainforth Car Park (where I have not seen it before.)

Today 26 April I have seen Mountain Aven in flower, (and one Tormentil flower), lots of Bird's-eye Primrose, Primroses and Cowslips and Pyrenean Scurvey grass. 

At Malham Tarn Lawn there were lots of Early Purple Orchids. the Marsh Valerian and Bog bean were in bud but not quite out. the Globe flowers were just coming out (I usually tell people mid-May for these). 

The road verges have Sweet Cicely coming out. There are also a few plants of Cow Parsley which are just coming out but not as obvious as the former. The Sloe is going over. Apple blossom and Cherry and Bird cherry is out. Red Campion is out. 

Fibrous Tussock-sedge is in flower as is Spring Sedge, and several other sedges the flowers are emerging. The Brown sedge was not in flower.

On the Fen there was Cuckoo -flower but no Greater Bittercress yet. It was easy to see the fen mosses as the sedges and other fen plants are not too dense. We heard Willow Warbler and saw Swallows.  But not Sedge warbler or Reed bunding - but we did not go everywhere on the fen.  On the tarn we saw two Greylag geese and a Canada- goose. We watched pondskaters on the pools pounce after insects that landed. The Cranberry was in bud. The Marsh Violet was in full flower on tussocks in the fen. Goldilocks was just coming out.

There were lots of Water Crowfoot leaves but no flowers in the side stream that flows into the inflow stream.

In the afternoon I drove to Airedale and noticed one hawthorn tree in flower and one in bud. That's all.  In general Hawthorn is not in flower.

The weather has gone cold today so maybe it will hold things up, and let us stay in this delicious "Just coming out stage" for a while longer.

I have seen Meadow Foxtail flowers for about two weeks - but not noticed any other grasses yet (apart from Blue Moor-grass of course.

I stopped at the garden centre with my neighbour but she said "I never buy plants till the end of May - there is lots of time for frost yet!" So we just enjoyed looking. We had a rain shower for half an hour - that is not enough to replenish the water in the ground!

The Daffodils by the roadside are mostly dead, thought there are still a few white Narcissus type ones left.
Dandelions have been lining the road verges for about two weeks now. 

Wood Anemones have been out for three weeks. I noticed a few Bluebells at Bolton Abbey Woods on 12 April - I do not expect to see them till May.  The Lily of the Valley in my garden box is just coming out.

Well that's enough notes for now.

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