Friday, 16 June 2017

Zig Zag and all that! and Specimen 3a.

"Zig Zag Clover" from a couple of years ago - just starting to come through today (Click over to enlarge)
Friday 16th June 2017 - Hutton Roof  0900hrs to 1100hrs

Decided to check out a area of Hutton Roof on the other side to where I have been working recently. I wanted to check out some old Schmalhausenii or for that matter some of the fabulous "Atrorubens" etc. But initially it proved very disappointing with most of the Schmals having now disappeared and just not come through. I have realised it has been a downward trend in this part of HR for some time now especially in connection to the hybrids. However all was worth it to find a very special new plant and here is why I think so.

Probable relation to long gone Specimen 3 (Click over to enlarge)
So what makes this so interesting to me! well first of all geographically it is only within approx five feet of the original Schmalhauseneii No.3 (which failed with no growth in 2015 and 2016).  This plant is one of the bolder specimens which I call "aerials (television aerials)" meaning their leaves are exceptionally narrow and elongated together with the additional feature that the leaves are not opposites but "alternate" around the stem and not only this but also show abnormally extra large lower bracts!  It's a very local feature which I have only registered with this particular part of the Hutton Roof area, I don't recall of it appearing on any specimens outside of this local area. Yet several of the past schmals from around this area have had these features.

Another photo of a cracking specimen possibly related to our old Spec 3 and
which shows the "aerial" large bracts and 30 plus flowers which go all around the stem. 

3a showing the very narrow elongated spiralling leaves

It was over five years ago that I found this beautiful population of Zig Zag Clover - Trifolium medium (see header photo above). In fact on the whole of Hutton Roof I have now found only three populations of this beautiful clover.  Today I checked out one of the populations and it was obvious from the moment they came into view that this year is going to be something really special with the colony having swelled by five times on last year,  although it will be a couple of weeks before most of them are in flower and what a glorious spectacle that will be.  Here is a couple of photos from today which show some of the area they are covering and a little bonus to see one of the plants just coming into flower.

Zig Zag Clover (Trifolium medium) Click over to enlarge
Shows about 1/4 of the Zig Zag population at this particular area - Click over to enlarge
Close up of Zig Zag leaf - 16th June 2017 - Click over to enlarge