All walks start off at 10am (so try to get to the meeting place by 9.30am) and usually finish at around 4pm. Meetings are open to all and are free unless otherwise stated. Bring hand-lens, notebooks and field guides if you wish, relevant OS 1:25000 maps and a GPS if you have one. Suitable clothing and footwear is recommended and bring a packed lunch. If the weather is very wet (or forecast to be) the meeting may be cancelled – contact the co-ordinator beforehand to check.
Most of the meetings this year have been organised in East Cornwall where the bulk of the recording effort for the next few years is needed, especially on Bodmin Moor (*) and the China clay areas near St Austell.
Tel: 01726 890384 or 07714738189. email firstname.lastname@example.org
Botanical Cornwall Group Co-ordinator – Ian Bennallick Lower Polmorla, St. Wenn, Bodmin, Cornwall, PL30 5PE.
Botanical Cornwall 2013
Number 15 is in preparation for publishing in 2011, so if you have any new of interesting records, or wish to submit an article regarding recording in Cornwall and/or the Isles of Scilly please contact the editors:
>> I.J. Bennallick and
>> D.A. Pearman
Botanical Cornwall 2010
>> Download BC2010 here (pdf 4Mb)
Botanical Cornwall 14 (2010) is available as a printed document from ERCCIS, Five Acres, Allet, Truro, Cornwall, TR4 9DJ for £7 incl. p&p in UK (please send a cheque made out to Cornwall Wildlife Trust)
>> Next county
Report on 2012
It has been an interesting year for species we had thought were probably extinct in Cornwall or getting very close to being declared so. John Sproull found a huge colony of Marsh Clubmoss (Lycopodiella inundata) at Park Pit (SX17) on the southern edge of Bodmin Moor, on an old mica dam as part of old china clay workings. This hadn't been seen at it's last remaining site (Retire Common SX06) since 2008 despite regular searching. As I was mapping the colony at Park Pit I came across two patches of Stag's-horn Clubmoss (Lycopodium clavatum) a species recorded sparingly in the past with the last record (probably correct, as it was for a site very close to Park Pit) in the late 1980s.
Then a chance comment by a friend of Nick Sleep mentioned that she had Corn Buttercup (Ranunculus arvensis) in her garden gathered from seed from plants she found in her arable fields near St Dominick, on the west side of the River Tamar, last seen there in 2000 (but unreported). This has always been rarely recorded in Cornwall and the last one is for 1974 near Liskeard (SX36), but without a specific locality. We searched the field in late summer and Paul Gainey found a few plants with their fantastic spiny seeds and bright yellow flowers, in roughly the place where they had been seen before. Interestingly the field has several arable plant species which were recorded as associates to Ranunculus arvensis in its Devon sites by Nick Stewart a few years ago.
A very late record came to light (yesterday!) and we can now confirm that Shepherd's-needle (Scandix pecten-veneris) is no longer considered extinct in Cornwall. It had hung on - JUST- on a bit of open Cornish hedge/wall next to previously cultivated fields at Porth Joke (SW76) until 2005, when just one plant was found by Hazel Meredith, down from about 60 plants in 1986. A couple of days ago, a friend of a friend of Hazel's presented her with a fruit which she knew was from Shepherd's-needle. It transpired that on a tenanted farm south of St Issey (SW97) the tenant farmer had got his combine harvester clogged with the plant's seeds whilst combining in part of a field. It was abundant in an area of about 50 m by 20 m. On a visit yesterday the field is now under winter corn, but (much to the farmer's dismay) I found many small seedlings, but have arranged to collect some plants before the field is sprayed next year.
With the re-discovery of Perennial Centaury (Centaurium scilloides), Beech Fern (Phegopteris connectilis) and Blunt-flowered Rush (Juncus subnodulosus) in Cornwall in the last couple of years it shows that chance discovery or educated guesses may provide us with others in 2013. Can anyone find Strapwort (Corrigiola litoralis) at Loe Pool (SW62), or Purple Spurge (Euphorbia peplis) or Cottonweed (Otanthus maritimus) on a beach somewhere?
One species which we would like to find, or at least get the most recent record date, is Small-flowered Tongue-orchid (Serapias parviflora). All enquiries I have made leads to 2008 as the most recent year seen on its sole British site, in a field near Penlee Point, SX44. If anyone has seen it since then PLEASE let me know.
>> Ian Bennallick (Botanical Cornwall Group co-ordinator)
>> Davey’s Tentative List 1902 (pdf 6.6 MB)
>> Davey’s Flora of Cornwall 1909 (pdf 14 MB)
News and events
Natural England Lizard Survey - a week of intensive surveying on the Lizard Peninsula in June 2013.
NOTE - I have just had an email from Steve Townsend (Reserve Manager, Lizard National Nature Reserve) from Natural England to say "We have been overwhelmed with applicants [for the monitoring vegetation on the Lizard project]. Thanks to everyone very much for their interest and we will get back to everyone asap, but we are not going to be able to include everyone this year!"
If you have expressed an interest in helping this year but have been unsuccessful, sorry for any disappointment. However you may like to know of the BCG walk from Lizard Point to Kynance Cove on Saturday 25th May - see details here.
Caroline Beadle, events coordinator of Coverack Space 2000 has sent me details of some exciting wild flower guided walks at different locations on The Lizard Peninsula between May and August 2013, led by local botanists Dr Gillian Ashworth and Peter Wood. Details of these walks (and other events) can be downloaded from the Coverack Community website - see 'Summer Events 2013.
Sun 12th. Wild Flower guided walk through Coverack 1:30 - 4:30pm meet at North Corner Car Park SW782187.
Thurs 23rd Wild Flower guided walk Carne Creek to St Anthony Church 1:30 - 4:30pm meet at the layby near head of Creek SW769249.
Thurs 6th Wild Flower guided walk Predannack to Kynance10am - 4pm meet at Predannack Wollas NT car park SW669162
Thurs 13th Wild Flower guided walk Treleaver to Blackhead 1:30 - 4:30pm meet at NT car park SW772168.
Thurs 20th Wild Flower guided walk 10am- 4pm Goonhilly Downs. 10am - 4pm meet at Goonhilly Nature Reserve car park SW730211.
Thurs 27th Wild Flower guided walk, Gwendreath to Kennack. 10am - 4pm meet at Gwendreath turn off SW726182.
Tues 11th Wild Flower guided walk, Dean Quarry to Godrevy Cove 1:30 - 4:30pm meet at Entrance Gate to Dean Quarry SW801205
Sat 27th Wild Flower guided walk, Coverack to Lowland 1:30 - 4:30pm meet at North Corner Car Park SW782187.
Thurs 15th Wild Flower guided walk through Coverack1:30 - 4:30pm meet at North Corner Car Park SW782187.
For details of CS2000 events contact Caroline 281448 or email email@example.com (So that CS2000 can continue to run these events we will ask for a donation to go towards covering our expenses and insurance. Thank you for your support. Please wear appropriate footwear.)'
Ferns, Clubmosses, Quillworts and Horsetails of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly
Rosaline Murphy, Christopher Page, Rosemary Parslow and Ian Bennallick
Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have a remarkably rich and varied fern flora, and this book is the culmination of many years of study of these enigmatic plants. An invaluable guide to over 70 ferns, clubmosses, quillworts and horsetails, this book covers species (both native and introduced), subspecies, varieties and hybrids. Each account has a short description of the plant where relevant; the distribution in Europe (including the British Isles); and habitats and distribution in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. Maps show distribution on a tetrad basis in Cornwall and at a finer resolution in the Isles of Scilly. Scanned images of actual specimens are given where these help and colour photographs are included throughout. The introduction covers the various habitats in Cornwall, the climate, soils and geology and the effects of such activities as mining and china clay workings, and the special conditions on the Isles of Scilly.
Many interesting records have been made in the last few years. These include the 2012 finds on the edge of Bodmin Moor: populations of Marsh Clubmoss, a species that has always been extremely rare in Cornwall and is now Nationally Scarce and Endangered, together with Stag’s-horn Clubmoss, a species previously considered extinct in the county.
Published by the Environmental Records Centre for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly (ERCCIS), which is based at the Cornwall Wildlife Trust, it has been sponsored by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Federation of Biological Recorders (CISFBR), the Botanical Society of the British Isles (BSBI) and the British Pteridological Society (BPS).
If you would like a copy by post please send your name and address and a cheque made payable to 'CISFBR' for £25 (= £20 plus £5 p&p) to Ian Bennallick, Lower Polmorla, St Wenn, Bodmin, Cornwall, PL30 5PE. For more details email Ian Bennallick or phone 01726890384 or 07714738189.
The book is also available to buy from the ERCCIS office (based at the Cornwall Wildlife Trust, Five Acres, Allet, Truro, TR4 9DJ) priced £20.