bird's foot trefoil, Bryn Euryn, burnet rose, common rockrose, common vetch, cowslip, early purple orchid, flowering in June, flowering in May, hoary rockrose, hop trefoil, kidney vetch, salad burnet, wild thyme, yellow flowers
The meadow, known by older locals as the Adders’ Field is located on a limestone hillside in North Wales. It is not much of a field really, maybe more of a clearing in the woodland and I have yet to spot an Adder there, but despite the through-traffic of folks and dogs it is home to an array of lovely wildflowers.
Although the area is relatively small, it has dry open grassland as you can see, a small rocky outcrop that is the other side of the rise, top right of the image, that dips down to a damper area sheltered by trees. On the left is a woodland edge with gorse and hawthorn shrubbery and at the top end a lovely mix of trees including oak, ash and silver birch. May is the perfect month in which to see many of the wildflowers at their best and now as June approaches those at their peak a couple of weeks ago are fading and beginning to set seed, but there are others waiting to take the limelight.
This year the Cowslips and Early Purple Orchids have produced prolific and beautiful displays.
The rocky outcrop I mentioned earlier is a miniature natural rockery. It is well sheltered and gets plenty of sun and is now supporting a surprising number of plant species, most of them with yellow flowers.
There are a couple of clumps of Hoary Rockrose, a nationally rare plant that thrives on this hillside.
Common rockrose, which is prolific across most of the upper areas of the hill;
there is Bird’s Food Trefoil cascading over the rocks which shows off how pretty this plant is. It’ s more often at ground level where it’s harder to appreciate.
There is a small patch too of Kidney Vetch; this is one of the few spots I am aware of it growing locally.
Then there is a little bit of the tiny- flowered Hop Trefoil
and for a tiny touch of contrast, a sprinkle of Wild Thyme.
This combination of plant species, except the Kidney Vetch, occurs on other parts of the upper hillside, but it is nice to see them here in this ‘mini-habitat’. The grassy area around the outcrop is also studded with golden yellow, here in the form of buttercups. In the original image you can just see the white flowers of a Burnet Rose peeking in to the frame. They are flowering now, although I fancy not as prolifically as last year and many of the flowers seem smaller.
I did though spot one spray of bigger roses that would have been perfect as an off-the-shrub bridal bouquet, if a bit prickly to hold.
Nearby, growing up through the grass, was a much more modest plant, a pretty pink/purple Common Vetch.