2021 County Report for Co. Longford

Ciaran Bruton

Ciaran Bruton VC Recorder

After a barren year in 2020, it was a relief to be able to move about the country without restriction, and recording in Longford gathered pace as 2021 rolled past.

The Shannon exerts a strong pull on any botanist, and the callows above Lanesborough were explored, yielding new sies for Lathyrus palustris and Stellaria palustris. The abandoned railway sidings at Lanesborough Power Station held Rubus saxatilis, locally uncommon, and lots of Mycelis muralis, which turned out to be a new VC record.

An old quarry in Lanesborough Commons is home quite a population of an as yet unidentified Hieracium, and three Cotoneaster species were identified, C. hjelmqvistii, C, sternianus and C. rehderi, all new to the vicecounty.

Pleasing finds from Corlea included Bidens cernua and the occasional Senecio sylvaticus, while Malva moschata was found in Ballymahon.

Find of the year was certainly a new population, several hundred ramets strong, of Teucrium scordium, Water Germander, on the eastern shore of Lough Forbes. This is the first site north of Lough Ree, and the most northerly in Britain and Ireland.

The ever expanding VC non-native list increased with a first Pentaglottis sempervirens county record, a second site for Persicaria amplexicaulis, along with  new records for Saponaria officinalis and Symphytum × uplandicum.

There is not a lot to report on the bramble front. Rubus vestitus has proven to be very common, with several new hectad records, but a more targeted search, particularly in the northern drumlin country could be fruitful.