Nature Blog Network

Weeds' seeds

Richard Mabey writes:

‘Weeds’ seeds are always there, waiting for their chance. A break in the surface vegetation, a little light and moisture and they are away. Whilst I was writing this in January I fetched a teaspoonful of earth from an unpromising patch of waste ground near my home and stirred it up in a glass of water. When the soil had settled there were fifteen seeds floating on the surface amongst the woody debris.’

(The Unofficial Countryside, Little Toller Books, Stambridge 2010 p 37.)

So I repeated the experiment with a teaspoon of earth from the field. Nothing.

Can’t be right, surely, so I did it again with a bit more. Two.

Maybe was writing about wasteland in the London area. An ex paddock formerly allotments in East Lancs is obviously a totally different proposition and whilst a look at the flora on the field in the species list shows relatively few seed-reproducing plants, I did expect more than two!

Springhill at night

Recorded this at about 22.30 this May.

night sounds

The kind people at Wild About Britain have identified it as the alarm call of the starling. The other suggestion, moorhen, is unlikely given the distance from suitable water.