Narrow-leaved Everlasting-pea

A relatively quiet day, preparing myself for a long day of fieldwork tomorrow. I had an early walk round Castor Hanglands, before the rain came in. The midsummer flowers are now in full-bloom - creamy swathes of Meadowsweet, sugar-pink pom-poms of Common Valerian and  tangles of purple Tufted Vetch line the wider rides, with splashes of golden Perforate St.John's-wort to prevent it all feeling a bit too pastel. 

I was pleased to find four patches of Narrow-leaved Everlasting-pea, a more subtle relative of the puce-pink Broad-leaved Everlasting-pea that rampages in many gardens and brownfield sites at this time of year. Narrow-leaved Everlasting-pea is altogether more refined, and generally grows on wood and ride edges. It's locally frequent in the south-west, where it can be found on the coast, and occurs across much of southern Britain, but many populations are small, and it continues to be threatened by nutrient enrichment and lack of woodland management.

I had been hoping to spot a Purple Emperor, but the rather cool and overcast conditions with a fresh breeze, meant that there was little butterfly action, mostly Ringlets, with a scatter of Meadow Browns, Large and Small Skippers and several freshly emerged Commas.

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