Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sixth anniversary of the project

Today was the sixth birthday of the project and the area really does look different from day one, though many of the plants are probably the same.

20030918 Metre  15 September 2003

20090915 Metre 004 15 September 2009

I wanted to record something new by way of a celebration and managed to find some small, round microfungi on fallen leaves from the box. They were Mycosphaerella buxi, like small white drum tops with a brown rim.

20090915 Mycosphaerella buxi 015

Flowers now include only some closed up smooth hawksbeard, a late heath speedwell, square-stalked St Johnswort and one white herb-robert behind Midsummer Pond.

The trees, not surprisingly, have grown to some size and in a few more years the area will be a coppice with one birch standard.

Butterfly Rock is its usual tapestry of moss and lichen, somewhat refreshed by recent rains. Surprisingly two small Crepis capillaris plants towards the northern edge of the top plateau have survived the long dry summer. Do they get moisture and sustenance from earth formed by the lower plants, or have they sent questing roots down the north face into more fertile ground?

20090915 Metre Butterfly Rock 008

The medlars are falling: it is almost autumn again and I wonder if the Metre and I will travel together for another six years ... or more.