2020 County Report for Peeblesshire

Luke Gaskell

Peeblesshire.    VC78     Luke Gaskell.


Due to COVID-19 restrictions very little recording has taken place in the VC with only 248 new records entered into the DDB.

Lindsay Mackinlay found Betonica officinalis, Betony, at Crookhaugh in the upper Tweed valley which is the first apparently native record for this species. Previous records are probably introductions for instance sown in wild flower mixes on road verges.

Reuben Singleton discovered a colony of Ophioglossum vulgatum, Adders-tongue which is rare in Peeblesshire, while carrying out an ecological survey in connection with a commercial forestry application. Large areas of upland pasture are currently being afforested helped by generous incentives from the Scottish Government. Although it is likely that this patch of Adders-tongue will be left unplanted the rate at which good semi-natural grasslands are disappearing is alarming.

Staying with forestry I was interested to see Filago minima, Small Cudweed spreading along a forest access road in Cloich forest. These roads are apparently a good habitat for this species but I had previously only seen it on river gravels and will need to look out for it in the future.

Most of my botanising in 2020 has been close to home in Selkirkshire where I was recording monads in a 10km square. I found that concentrating on a relatively small area was very rewarding and I hope to do something similar in Peeblesshire.

With help and encouragement from Andy Amphlett I have been validating records in the DDB. I am attempting to remove or correct suspect entries but unfortunately, I still have a long way to go.