2022 County Report for Radnorshire

Liz Dean

The botany group in Presteigne is more concerned with keeping an eye on their local patch rather than exploring other areas of Radnorshire.  This led to some exciting developments in that a field next to the local primary school was acquired for the community and is now being used as a learning resource for the school.  Pupils from all years have been out taking photos, collecting specimens and having them identified for their scrapbooks.

In addition a whole school walk was organised to the local woods where the children used a picture key to identify the trees.  The identification skills of our group had given the school staff the confidence to undertake the walk with that backup available.  We hope to continue this relationship and perhaps extend to other schools.  Everybody is very keen to encourage the next generation of botanists

Sadly, John Ockenden died in the summer.  He was essentially a tree man but he loved square bashing and, with Phil Marshall acting as his legs, regularly contributed records and was an enthusiastic naturalist to the end.

Interesting plants arise on odd occasions: on the New Year walk in Presteigne early in 2022 we found Parietaria Judaica ( Pellitory-of-the-wall), the first record for 50 years; we did not see it again until the 2023 New Year walk when we again found it, but in Knighton this time.  I discovered an interest in allotments, where weeds were often abundant, and one provided a new county record, Chenopodium giganteum (Tree Spinach).