Habitat: Waterside

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Showing 1-25 of 113 records

Common Alder

Flower: Yellow and pendulous (male catkins). Green and oval (female catkins). Male and female catkins present on same tree, and grouped in clusters of 3-8 on each stalk. Fruit: In winter the catkins turn into hard, dark, cone-like fruit which eventually release the seeds. Leaves: Deciduous. Round, dark green, leathery, smooth, serrated edges.

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Italian Alder

Flower: The male and female flowers appear on separate trees. The yellowish-brown male catkins are pendulous and borne in clusters of 3 to 6 and are up to 10cm long. The male catkins appear before the leaves ... Fruit: The female flowers become woody and turn into the cone-like fruit. The fruit are overwintering. The cones are larger than most other Alder cone species, up to 2.5cm long. Leaves: A deciduous tree with dark green, alternate, glossy, heart-shaped leaves and finely serrated margins. Cordata (see Botanical Name) means 'heart-shaped'.

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Large Bittercress

Flower: 4 white petals which are very occasionally purple, up to 12mm wide. Flowers clustering together at the top of the plant. 6 stamens, purple anthers. Fruit: Long, thin, flat seed pods that eventually split open lengthwise. Leaves: Without a basal rosette, as with Hairy Bittercress and Wavy Bittercress. The basal leaves are long-stalked and the upper stem leaves are very short-stalked. The leaves run alternate along the stem and...

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Wavy Bittercress

Flower: Tiny and forming clusters at the top. 4 white petals with 6 yellow stamens. Counting the number of stamens is perhaps the most reliable way to distinguish this flower from the almost identical Hairy B... Fruit: Long, thin, cylindrical seed pods which usually are lower than the topmost flowers. This is useful to know when trying to distinguish this flower from Hairy Bittercress which has seed pods that normal... Leaves: The basal rosette has alternate leaves. Stem leaves are compound with 3-6 pairs of leaflets and a terminal leaflet. Leaflets are wavy edged. The upright main stem upon which the leaves emerge from are...

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Creeping Chinese Bramble

Flower: 5 white petals. Flowers appear in clusters at the end of stems. Fruit: Juicy, red, aggregated drupes. Leaves: The younger leaves are ovate and lightly toothed. As the leaves age, they become slightly pinnate with 3-5 lobes. The leaves are dark, shiny, crinkly and slightly leathery in appearance. The underside...

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Brooklime

Flower: Small deep blue flowers emerging in pairs from leaf axils, 4 petals. Fruit: A nearly spherical brown capsule, splitting open when mature. Up to 4mm in diameter. Leaves: Shiny and leathery, succulent leaves that are round to oval and have bluntly toothed margins. Their stems are often tinted reddish-brown.

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Common Bulrush

Flower: Tiny and densely packed, forming a chocolate-coloured sausage-shaped spike. Fruit: Fruits are minute. They are produced from the female flowers and are covered in fluffy down. Leaves: Stalkless, long-sheathed, alternate leaves which are mainly produced at the bottom of the stem. Pale blue-green and linear.

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Trifid Bur-marigold

Flower: Yellow, stalked and emerging from leaf axils. Normally unrayed but sometimes with short stubby rays (petals), up to 2.5cm. Inner bracts are dark and inconspicuous. The flowers point skywards, but the ... Fruit: Oblong and flattened. The small barbed bristles on top of the fruit cause them to stick to clothing while brushing past. Leaves: Opposite, elongated leaves, toothed and with short winged stalks, 3-lobed, but sometimes 5-lobed. The leaves have a pair of lobes at their base.

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Butterbur

Flower: Large lilac-pink spikes growing up to 30cm and appearing before the leaves emerge. Fruit: The fruit and seeds (achenes) are white, hairy tufts, each up to 3mm in length. Leaves: Enormous rhubarb-like leaves, up to 1 metre across. The leaves are heart-shaped, toothed and grey beneath.

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Chives

Flower: Many dense balls of pink-purple flowers on long unbranched stems, each having 2 short and narrow papery bracts. Individual flowers tubular with 5 petals at the end, consisting of a dark vein running d... Fruit: A capsule or pod. Leaves: Long cylindrical grass-like leaves which sprout from the ground in clumps. The leaves are soft and hollow.

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Common Comfrey

Flower: Clusters of pink-purple or yellowish cream flowers, up to 2cm wide. Flowers can also be magenta, red or white. Fruit: A cluster of 4 shiny nutlets, later turning a dark brown or black. Leaves: Similar-looking to Foxglove leaves. Large, slender, undivided leaves with a rough texture.

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Early Crocus

Flower: Pale lilac, cup-shaped, white tube (stem). Yellow to orange stamens, rich with pollen. Leaves: Linear, erect, grass-like leaves with a pale midrib.

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Dewberry

Flower: The white flowers are are up to 1 inch in diameter. Pollinated by insects. Fruit: Dull blue, fleshy, waxy berries consisting of many segments known as drupes (or drupelets). Dewberry may be confused with the much more common Blackberry plant, a.k.a. Bramble. The berries of the Dewb... Leaves: Alternate, trefoil and hairy leaves. Stalked and serrated. The branches of the Dewberry plant are more scrambling than those of Blackberry. The Blackberry is taller and more upright.

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Wych Elm

Flower: Tuft of red stamens appearing on the twigs long before the leaves appear. Wind pollinated. Fruit: A winged fruit, pale green and with a notched end. Each winged fruit contains a single seed in its centre. The winged fruit are known as 'samara's' and reach a maximum of 1cm across. The samara's turn... Leaves: A deciduous shrub or tree. Alternate and oval leaves with pointed tips. Dark green and sharp-pointed serrations around the margins of the leaves. The Wych Elm has larger leaves than those of other Elm...

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Enchanter's Nightshade

Flower: 2 tiny white deeply notched petals, sometimes tinged pale pink, upto 7mm across. Hairy sepals and no bracts. Stigmas are deeply lobed. Flower spike not overcrowded, positioned at the top of the main s... Fruit: Burr-like fruits, teardrop-shaped, not splitting open when ripe. Each fruit has 2 chambers and is covered in hooked hairs which cling to clothing upon passing by. Leaves: Simple, toothed, heart-shaped leaves, up to 5 inches long and 3 inches wide. The opposite pairs of leaves are at right-angles to the pair below. The upper leaves are the smallest.

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Sensitive Fern

Flower: Flowers are absent on ferns. Instead, they reproduce using spores via a process called 'sporification'. Fruit: Spores exist on the erect, fertile stalks and are enclosed inside bead-like coverings. Leaves: A deciduous fern. Large, deeply pinnate. Each leaflet of the frond is untoothed and lanceolate to oblong. The fronds are sometimes called 'fiddleheads'.

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Common Figwort

Flower: Small, purple and brown, broader than long, on square stems. Sepals lobed with a light border. Fruit: Green, globular but tapering into a sharp tip. Leaves: Leaves appear together, opposite one another along the square-stalked, erect stem. They are triangular, pointed and have forward-pointing, sharp-toothed margins. Hairless and shiny. Sometimes the leav...

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Water Figwort

Flower: Brighter than other Figwort species and sepals with pale edges. The small flowers are reddish-brown, on square stems. Fruit: Green and globular capsules, tapering into a sharp point. Leaves: Leaves appear in opposite pairs another along the square-stalked, erect stem. The leaves are round and have round-toothed margins. They become smaller towards the top of the plant. Sometimes the leave...

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Water Forget-me-not

Flower: Clustered, pink flower buds, later becoming sky blue. 5 petals with yellow and white centres. Fruit: Small, 4-parted, egg-shaped, shiny black nutlets. Up to 2mm long. Leaves: Alternate, toothless leaves with pointed tips. The lowest leaves are the broadest and the upper leaves are more linear. The leaves are covered in short appressed hairs.

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Greater Quaking Grass

Flower: Ornamental. Large pale green hanging spikelets reaching 2.5cm long and consisting of up to 12 segmented florets. Later turning gold with maturity. Fruit: One-sided dry seed (caryopsis). Leaves: The flat, linear leaves are clumped together in compact tufts.

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Gypsywort

Flower: White, purple-dotted and appearing in whorls from the bases of the upper leaves. 4 petals. Fruit: A dry fruit (schizocarp) in 4 parts. Leaves: Oval leaves in opposite pairs along the erect stem. The leaves are mostly stalked and have deeply serrated margins. The leaves sometimes turn red or purple in autumn.

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Hemlock

Flower: White umbels to 6cm wide with small bracts underneath. Fruit: Dark browns small, smooth, ridged and flattened capsule. Each fruit contains two seeds. Up to 3mm in length. Leaves: Bipinnate, hairy, fern-like leaves. Triangular, up to 20 inches (50cm) long.

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Hemp Agrimony

Flower: Dense trusses of pale pink florets with long white styles and long purple-tipped bracts. Fruit: A 5-edged achene with a white pappus, 3mm long. Leaves: Palmate, opposite leaves, up to 10cm long, on reddish stems. 3 to 5 lanceolate leaflets. The leaves have toothed margins.

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Herb Paris

Flower: Flowers solitary and star-shaped. 4 narrow yellow-green petals and 4 broad green sepals. 8 erect green stamens with yellow anthers. Fruit: A purplish black berry with 4 purplish styles. Leaves: Pointed, oval and long-stalked. The leaves are arranged in whorls of 3 to 8 (usually 4) just below the flowers. Herb Paris is sometimes difficult to spot as it's often found growing hidden amongst the...

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Giant Hogweed

Flower: Enormous white umbel spreading to 1m wide. Fruit: Green, dry, oval to elliptical fruit, up to 1cm across. The fruit later turns brown. Leaves: Very large and deeply lobed with jagged teeth. The leaves are divided into 3 parts and can be as large as 1 metre across.

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