An English Wood in Spring ---Pictures Added

Images of undisturbed subjects in their natural environment. All subject types.

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Cactusdave
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Location: Bromley, Kent, UK

An English Wood in Spring ---Pictures Added

Post by Cactusdave »

It was a glorious Spring day yesterday, so my wife and I went for a walk in our nearest wood. As this was 'just a nice walk' I couldn't carry a load of kit, but compromised with my Panasonic G1 and the 90mm Elicar V-HQ manual focus macro lens. There were plenty of woodland flowers out and the dappled sunlight made for some nice available light. All pictures were taken with avalable light ISO 100-400.

Celandine

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Violet

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Wood Anemone

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Wood Sorrel

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Interesting how a lot of these early Spring flowers have very prominent guides to lead insects to thir nectar and so promote their pollenation. I bet these would show up even more strongly under the UV light visible to insects.

These flowers are all very pretty, but here's one that isn't so appealing, but is interesting.

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This is common toothwort, Lathraea squamaria. It is parasitic on the roots of hazel and alder, occasionally on beech and other trees. It consists of a branched whitish underground stem closely covered with thick, fleshy, colourless leaves. The only portions that appear above ground in April to May are the short flower-bearing shoots, which bear a spike of two-lipped dull purple flowers. As an obligate parasite it has no green leaves or other structures with chlorophyl. It is a rather uncommon plant, but is present in this wood on the roots of Beech, hazel and European lime.

There were plenty of primroses and a rather nice peacock butterfly on our walk, but I must be respectful of the posting limit and perhaps add to this thread tomorrow.
Last edited by Cactusdave on Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
Leitz Ortholux 1, Zeiss standard, Nikon Diaphot inverted, Canon photographic gear

lauriek
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Post by lauriek »

Nice set Dave, these certainly remind me of walks in the woods around here (Although I've never seen a toothwort!).

No bluebells?

twebster
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Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:02 am
Location: Phoenix "Valley of the Sun", Arizona, USA

Post by twebster »

This is a lovely set of flower images, even the toothwort has a certain appeal. Interesting that the toothwort has no chlorophyl. Nice set of images, well done. :D
Tom Webster

Phoenix "The Valley of the Sun", Arizona, USA

The worst day photographing dragonflies is better than the best day working! :)

Cactusdave
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Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 12:40 pm
Location: Bromley, Kent, UK

Post by Cactusdave »

Thanks Tom and Laurie.
Leitz Ortholux 1, Zeiss standard, Nikon Diaphot inverted, Canon photographic gear

Cactusdave
Posts: 1631
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 12:40 pm
Location: Bromley, Kent, UK

Post by Cactusdave »

As promised a few more pictures from my walk. Nothing typifies an English wood in early Spring more than the primrose, and this wood has plenty. Primroses prefer more open areas, rather than deep shade, and are quite variable in colour. Not all are the typical 'primrose yellow', I saw flowers that varied from almost white to a deep yellow. As Harold noted in another thread, primrose flowers come in two types, pin-eyed and thrum eyed, according to the arrangement of the floral parts. In pin-eyed flowers the stigma is at the top of the flower tube looking like a small green pin head. In this type of flower, the anthers are halfway down the central flower tube, in a ring around the style.

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In the thrum-eyed flower the style only goes halfway up the floral tube, so that the stigma is also positioned halfway up. The anthers in this type are at the top of the flower tube and can be seen as a tight bunch in the centre of the flower.

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A closer view reveals the anthers bunched together and peeping out in the centre of the flower.

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This is all part of the plant's cunning strategy to ensure cross-pollenation. More details and diagrams here http://www.countrysideinfo.co.uk/devon_bap/prim2.htm

To complete the series there is room for one insect. The camera and lens combination I had with me was not really suitable for skittish insects, but this peacock butterfly, fresh out of hibernation, was quite obliging as it basked in the warm Spring sun.

Image
Leitz Ortholux 1, Zeiss standard, Nikon Diaphot inverted, Canon photographic gear

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