3.10 p.m., 45°F, 7ºC; A little black fly visits the tiny flowers dotted with yellow stamens of the golden saxifrage, growing on the bank of the beck in the wood. In Plant and Planet, Anthony Huxley writes that golden saxifrage is also pollinated by springtails. Springtails feed amongst the leaf litter and need humid conditions.
It’s not obvious from my drawing, but, when I went back and checked, I found that this is the opposite-leaved golden saxifrage (there’s also an alternate-leaved species), Chrysoslenium oppositifolium, a common native plant of wet, acid soils in habitats such as woodland flushes, springs and stream sides.
The golden saxifrage is dotted along the waters edge like dapples of sunlight in this rare un-trampled corner of the wood, alongside bramble, nettle, lesser celandine and bluebell (not yet in flower) which spread further onto the banking amongst holly, hazel and hawthorn.
Blackbird and robin are singing, a pair of wrens perch on a log and flit off into the undergrowth. There’s a clatter of wings in the top of an ivy-covered alder as one wood pigeon harasses another.