The Battle of The Spanish Squill

By Ian Bushell

For the last couple of Sundays, I have been looking for Spanish squill among the bluebells. I have gone early and used the allotment entrance to the park. 

Certainly the copse at the bottom of Sheep Field, where we did the last haloing, is basically clear of squill now. I just found two clumps that I pulled out.  There might still be some still under the pollarded oak in the corner by the footbridge between Sleepers and Cornfield. I will check another day.

Examples of Hyacinthoides hybrids: the flowers are shorter, more conical in shape, a paler blue and striped; they are not confined to one side of the stem and the stem lacks the characteristic drop of the native bluebell.

I was disappointed to find what look like new plants in the copse near the Heritage Orchard in the allotment area. I pulled some out but it needs a bit more work.  We need to make a more in-depth survey to try and find all of the little blighters before they make seed.

Now that the Government advice has shifted and we can take a short drive to take exercise as long as the exercise is much longer than the drive, we might be able to undertake more in the park.  Let’s hope lockdown ends soon and we can get back to work.

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