Sunday 26 April 2020

Late April flora along Abington Park Farm tracks

Ross and Anne DN have been regularly walking the paths up the hill from Chalky Road towards Abington Park Farm, and east along the grassy ride to Hildersham Wood. 

Anne noted a while back, that some field margins had been sown with an autumn ‘Bumblebird’ seed mix under the Countryside Stewardship Scheme, and the results are starting to show. The best area is along the edge of the top copse and all the way to the Wood. Here there is Fodder Radish in flower (white, pink and pale lilac), with the first flowers emerging of Phacelia – a ferny-leaved plant with stunningly blue flowers. Common Vetch plants are visible by their leaves but no flowers yet. 

In addition, the bulk of the green leaves are those of Winter Triticale and Winter Barley, together with self-sown Black Grass (flower-heads now appearing) and the yellow flowers of Black Mustard (or similar).  Lots to see, and lots more still to come through the summer. It makes the walk so much more pleasurable and promises a good nectar supply for butterflies and seed for birds.

The wide grassy path leading to Hildersham Wood is also full of flowers: the last of the Common Dog Violet, lots of Cowslip, White Dead-nettle, Cow Parsley, Dandelion, Ground-ivy, and, just inside the Abington Parish boundary, some escapes from the amazing Bluebell carpet in Hildersham Wood. Finally, near the Chalky Road gate, the first White Campion is in flower.

Field Margin along track towards the 'top copse'

Fodder Radish, near Hildersham Wood


 Wild Bluebells - 'escapees' from the amazing carpet in Hildersham Wood

 Coltsfoot seedheads

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The Aims of Abington Naturewatch

At their meeting on 9 April 2005 the members approved this revised version of the aims of Abington Naturewatch:

  • To monitor and record the wildlife (fauna & flora) within the borders of the Abingtons;
  • To encourage protection of our wildlife, maintain its quality and foster its diversity;
  • To promote awareness of the richness, potential and problems of the natural environment of the Abingtons;
  • To cooperate in improving access to the local natural environment for the benefit of all Abington villagers.

Pat Daunt, Founder

The organisation is informal and communication is by email if possible; members are notified of events from time to time. Contact details are maintained by a small "project team". There is currently no membership fee as costs are covered by voluntary contributions at events.

Members are encouraged to report notable sightings of flora and fauna within the Abingtons to the appropriate sector coordinator and an illustrated record is published annually.

A map of the area covered, with some features noted, is available here:>

For more information or to join, please contact David Farrant on (01223) 892871.

Contributions to our records should be sent to sector contacts or either of the above. Photographs may also be submitted to Andy Merryweather (