Stoneycliffe Wood

hawthornThere’s an arch of hawthorn blossom over the path at the entrance to Stoneycliffe Wood Yorkshire Wildlife Trust reserve. Silver birch and oak are in fresh foliage ; evening sunlight dapples the path.

It’s been cool all day then at four the sun came out and it’s turned into a glorious summer evening.

Stoneycliffe Woods YWT nature reserve.
Stoneycliffe Woods YWT nature reserve.

wild garlicAs we walk down into the wood there’s a waft of wild garlic ; some of the leaves are starting to turn yellow and shrivel but some plants are still in flower.

wood avensAnother path side plant, wood avens, also known as Herb Bennet, grows alongside. It’s currently in yellow flower but will later have clusters of hooked seeds which can hitch a ride on a passing dog to be transported along the network of paths through the woods.

Tree canopy: sessile oak.
Tree canopy: sessile oak.

yellow archangelherb robertThere’s a lot of Herb Robert too: it’s hooked cranesbill seeds are transported in a similar way. The limestone chippings used in the path provide it with a suitable habitat as it’s a plant that tends to avoid acid soils.

There are a few patches of yellow archangel at the top end of the wood, a plant that is taken as an indicator of ancient woodland.

Song thrushes are calling in alarm or more probably in a dispute over territory.

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