Well, the weather’s rubbish but the flowers are doing their best. This is a little montage from today’s lap of the valley.

First up: the astounding carpet of Yellow Rattle at Tong Park. Spending most of my time on the northern slope of the valley I hadn’t realised what a phenomenal flower meadow Tong Park itself is.
Along a bit from the Rattle and there’s a similarly luxuriant blanket of Birdsfoot Trefoil
In amongst the yellows, an occasional spike of Spotted Orchid
In the soggy rough grazing east of the railway line, Brooklime. The plant with the best latin name going: Veronica beccabunga (would make a good name for the heroine in a racy novel).
Continuing the theme of carpetting: this time Ground Elder along the side of the golf course.
Ragged Robin at Tong Park
The most poisonous plant in Britain! Hemlock Water Dropwort on the stream feeding into Tong Park dam.
Poisonous…unless you are a caterpillar. These are the larvae of the moth Depressaria daucella. So called, I suspect, because the adults are so much more depressingly small and brown compared to their rather fancy offspring.

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