Embrace the Wonderful Biodiversity at Ross Bay

We had a visit from a lovely gentleman and group of specialist botanists at Ross Bay earlier in the year. They were keen to establish the extent of biodiversity of the plants, wild flowers in and around our farm counting and identifying the various species. They also matched them with their geographical status across the UK to see if there were any surprising results. Here are some of their findings.

Plant Life at Ross Bay

Scarce Species Found Locally

It was encouraging to see that we had some locally scarce and also threatened species growing locally. These included juniper, wild onion and ransoms (wild garlic) which are more commonly in the shade of wild forests. Rock samphire, was also found and is not normally found so far north. All these species must love our local ecosystem, the great weather and nutrient rich fertile land.

Some plant and wild flower species are indigenous to the coastal regions such as the wonderfully named ‘Sea mouse-ear chickweed’, ‘Danish scurvy grass’ and ‘Parsley water dropwort’. Others intriguingly named species can be found commonly across the UK countryside such as Round-leaved crowfoot, Pignut and Procumbent pearlwort. How many of the plant names below can you recognise and identify?

How Does Biodiversity Affect Us?

This wonderful array of bio diverse plant species also help encourage an equally diverse range of wildlife in and around our area too which we see day to day. This allows animal life and plant life to live happy and healthy lives. Biodiversity also provides aesthetic and cultural value to our lives too, it has been shown to increase our mental well-being. These are one of the reasons why so many guests love coming to Ross Bay Retreat.

The list below show what was found here and about at Ross Bay by the team of botanists.

Plant Life Findings at Ross Bay

Common name Scientific name County Status Comments
Yarrow Achillea millefolium Common
Creeping bent Agrostis stolinfera Common
Silver hairgrass Aira caryophyllea Common
Early hairgrass Aira praecox Common
Ramsons, wild garlic Allium ursinum Common
Wild onion Allium vineale Locally scarce
Meadow foxtail Alopecurus pratensis Common
Sweet vernal grass Anthoxanthum odoratum Common
Kidney vetch Anthyllis vulneraria Coastal only
Thrift, sea pink Armeria maritima Coastal only
Sea aster Aster tripolium Coastal only
Purple milk vetch Astragulus danicus Coastal only Predominantly East coast of UK, few West coast sites
Daisy Bellis perennis Common
Sea beet Beta maritima Coastal only
Soft brome (grass) Bromus hordaceus Uncommon
Heather Calluna vulgaris Common
Harebell Campanula rotundifolia Common
Wavy bittercress Cardamine flexuosa Common
Hairy bittercress Cardamine hirsuta Common
Cuckooflower Cardamine pratensis Common
Spring sedge Carex caryophylllea Common
Distant sedge Carex distans Coastal only
Brown sedge Carex disticha Uncommon
Glaucous sedge Carex flacca Common
Common sedge Carex nigra Common
Carnation sedge Carex panicea Common
Common knapweed Centaurea nigra Common
Sea mouse-ear chickweed Cerastium diffusum Coastal only
Common mouse-ear chickweed Cerastium fontanum Common
Sticky mouse-ear chickweed Cerastium glomeratum Common
Creeping thistle Cirsium arvense Common
Marsh thistle Cirsium palustre Common
Spear thistle Cirsium vulgare Common
Danish scurvygrass Cochlearia danica Scarce, coastal
Common scurvygrass Cochlearia officinalis Common
Pignut Conopodium majus Common
Sea kale Crambe maritima Coastal only Close to its northern limit in the UK
Hawthron Crataegus monogyna Common
Rock samphire Crithmum maritimum Scarce, coastal only At its northern limit in the UK
Crested dog’stail (grass) Cynosurus cristatus Common
Broom Cytiscus scoparius Common
Cock’sfoot (grass) Dactylis glomerata Common
Foxglove Digitalis purpurea Common
Field horsetail Equisetum arvense Common
Bel heather Erica cinerea Common
Eyebright Euphrasia agg. Common
Sheep’s fescue (grass) Festuca ovina Common
Red fescue (grass) Festuca rubra Common
Lesser celandine Ficaria verna Common
Meadowsweet Filipendula ulmaria Common
Cleavers, goosegrass Galium aparine Common
Heath bedstraw Galium saxatile Common
Lady’s bedstraw Galium verum Common
Dyer’s greenweed Genista tinctoria Uncommon Indicates nutrient rich, almost neutral, soils
Cut-leaved cranesbill Geranium dissectum Common
Dove’sfoot cranesbill Geranium molle Common
Herb robert Geranium robertianum Common
Sea milkwort Glaux maritima Common
Common rockrose Helianthemum nummularia Common Indicates nutrient rich, almost neutral, soils
Ivy Hedera helix Common
Hogweed Heracleum sphondyleum Common
Yorkshire fog (grass) Holcus lanatus Common
Bluebell Hyacinthoides non-scripta Common
Cat’s-ear Hypochaeris radicata Common
Yellow flag iris Iris pseudacorus Common
Sheep’sbit Jasione montana Uncommon Mainly coastal
Sharp-flowered rush Juncus acutiflorus Common
Saltmarsh rush Juncus gerardii Coastal only
Sea rush Juncus maritimus Coastal only
Juniper Juniper communis Scarce Locally threatened, with decreasing numbers
Bitter vetch Lathyrus linifolius Common
Common bird’sfoot trefoil Lotus corniculatus Common
Greater bird’sfoot trefoil Lotus pedunculatus Common
Field woodrush Luzula campestre Common
Purple moorgrass Molinia caerulea Common
Blinks Montia fontana Common
Watercress Nasturtium officinalis Common
Hemlock water dropwort Oenanthe crocata Common
Parsley water dropwort Oenanthe lachenalii Coastal only
Restharrow Ononis repens Common
Bird’s foot Ornithopus perpusillus Uncommon
Amphibious bistort Persicaria amphibia Common
Reed canary-grass Phalaris arundinacea Common
Mouse-ear Pilosella officinalis Common
Buck’shorn plantain Plantago coronopus Coastal only
Ribwort plantain Plantago lanceolata Common
Greater plantain Plantago major Common
Sea plantain Plantago maritima Coastal only
Annual meadow grass Poa annua Common
Heath milkwort Polygala serpyllifolia Common
Polypodt (fern) Polypodium vulgare Common
Silverweed Potentilla anserina Common
Tormentil Potentilla erecta Common
Self-heal Prunella vulgaris Common
Sloe, blackthorn Prunus spinosa Common
Bracken Pteridium aquilinum Common
Meadow buttercup Ranunculus acris Common
Bulbous buttercup Ranunculus bulbosus Common
Round-leaved crowfoot Ranunculus omiophyllus Common
Creeping buttercup Ranunculus repens Common
Sea radish Raphanus maritimus Coastal only
Burnet rose Rosa spinosissima Uncommon
Raspberry Rubus idaeus Common
Common sorrel Rumex acetosa Common
Sheep’s sorrel Rumex acetosella Common
Curled dock Rumex crispus Common
Procumbent pearlwort Sagina procumbens Common
Spring squill Scilla verna Coastal only Western coasts mainly
Autumn hawkbit Scorzoneroides autumnalis Common
English stonecrop Sedum anglicum Common
Ragwort Senecio jacobaea Common
Heath groundsel Senecia sylvatica Common
Sea campion Silene uniflora Coastal only
Goldenrod Solidago virgaurea Common
Perennial sowthistle Sonchus arvensis Common
Prickly sowthistle Sonchus asper Common
Smooth sowthistle Sonchus oleraceus Common
Bog stitchwort Stellaria alsine Common
Common chickweed Stellaria media Common
Dandelion Taraxacum agg. Common
Wood sage Teucrium scorodonia Common
Thyme Thymus polytrichus Common Nutrient-rich soils indicator
Lesser trefoil Trifolium dubium Common
White clover Trifolium repens Common
Sea arrowgrass Triglochin maritimum Coastal only
Common gorse Ulex europaeus Common
Western gorse Ulex gallii Uncommon Close to its northern limit in UK
Nettle Urtica dioica Common
Common cornsalad Valerianella locusta Common
Green field speedwell Veronica agrestis Common
Brooklime Veronica beccabunga Common
Heath speedwell Veronica officinalis Common
Common field speedwell Veronica persica Common
Heath dog violet Viola canina Common
Common dog violet Viola riviniana Common

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