Saturday, 17 June 2017

Erica erigena (Irish Heath) on a Wexford heath, a new county record

 I was doing some recording on a heath on Bargy Common when I came across this Erica which I took to be a garden species. I tried keying it out and only came up with Irish Heath. Sent a specimen to Charles Nelson who agreed with my ID. Charles said it is grown in gardens. All the other sites in Ireland are in the North-west. Wexford is the opposite corner. Couldn't see it in any gardens nearby. Will be interesting to see if it spreads.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Tragopogon porrifolius (Salsify) 2nd Wexford record

 Was checking out sites where I saw Dactylorhiza leaves earlier in the year, this morning before the rain got the better of me. Stopped quickly at a monad which I had visited early in the year to add some grasses to the recording card. Very surprised to see a group of Salsify flowering on the roadside at Castlellis. This is the 2nd county record. I wonder if I had seen it when the flowers were closed up if I would have recorded it as Tragopogon pratensis (Goat's-beard)!
 Below - plants on road verge

Monday, 22 May 2017

Luzula multiflora subsp. hibernica

 It was good to find lots of Luzula multiflora subsp. hibernica an Irish endemic today in the centre of a track leading to a disused quarry at Burrow very close to the Wicklow border. This is only the 4th record for the county. It is a much slender plant than Luzula multiflora subsp. congesta. It is more like a hybrid between Luzula campestris (Field Wood-rush) and Luzula multiflora (Heath Wood-rush) as it looks some where half way between the two species. Had to measure the seed appendage, all less than 0.3mm in length. The whole plant isn't as big or as hairy as Luzula multiflora subsp. congesta.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Trifolium ornithopodioides (Bird's-foot Clover) a new site on the south coast

 Bird's-foot Clover is a rare clover in Wexford. Very surprised today to find a new site at Bannow. 15 km from the nearest site on the south coast. I had walked over the clover twice before I noticed it on the bare gravel. There were 58 clumps. Bird's-foot Clover is very easy to over look as it looks like a small patch of non-flowering White Clover, has much smaller leaves. The flowers are very tiny and it is easy not to even notice them. A great find from a place I have been to a number of times over the years.

 Below is the habitat the clover was found in.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Euphorbia amygdaloides (Wood Spurge) re-found in Wexford

 Wood Spurge is not native in Ireland. It has been established in Co. Cork for well over a 100 years. In Wexford it has only been recorded twice. 1872 from near Enniscorthy and in 1955 at Bunclody, both are believed to be garden escapes. Neither give enough information with the record to know where to search. Wood Spurge isn't very commonly grown in Irish gardens. It was the last species I expected to re-find in the county. There was one clump of Wood Spurge on the edge of a patch of bracken near the bank of the River Slaney near Wexford Town. Will be interesting to see if it spreads.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Raphanus sativus var. oleifera (Fodder Radish)

 Fodder Radish was sown in many fields across Wexford in 2016. This year I have started to find them as an escaped from the fields. This one was on a road verge today. Has a large white radish. The crop should have died during the winter, The hole left by the radish should of helped put air into the soil. As the winter was so mild, the radish never died. The bottom photo is of a radish field today, the radish escaped from.

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Crocus x luteus (Yellow Crocus) new for Wexford

 I popped out today to check on some dead plants I saw last year which I thought was Garlic Mustard. As expected it was! The surprise was that Garlic Mustard is a new species to my home hectad (10-km square). While looking at the Garlic Mustard leaves I noticed a clump of Yellow Crocus. A new species for Co. Wexford. Not the most exciting find! Must of been dumped from a garden at some stage. Made it worth popping out on a wet day!