Habitat: Ditches

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Showing 1-25 of 105 records

Marsh Arrowgrass

Flower: A flower spike. The green flowers have purple edges. Individual flowers are up to 3mm wide. Flowers have 3 petals and 6 stamens. Fruit: Narrow, erect and arrow-like. Leaves: Long and grass-like leaves with deep grooves.

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Marsh Bedstraw

Flower: Small, white flowers. Up to 4mm in diameter. Fruit: Small, globular fruit, slightly wrinkled. Leaves: Rough-margined leaves, in whorls of 4 to 6. Stems are without prickles. The similar-looking Fen Bedstraw (Galium oliginosum) does not have prickles on the stems. Perennial which sometimes grows in wat...

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Great Burnet

Flower: Oval burgundy-coloured flower heads on long stalks. Fruit: An achene which is a small one seeded dry nut. Leaves: Alternate, long-stalked, compound leaves with up to 7 pairs of oval, stalked and toothed leaflets.

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Unbranched Bur-reed

Flower: Similar to Branched Bur-reed (Sparganium erectum) but with far fewer flowerheads. However, the main difference is that the flowerheads are unbranched. Unbranched Bur-reed is also a shorter plant than ... Fruit: Spherical burr-like, spiky. The fruits are with slender beaks. Leaves: Floating stems (up to 2 metres long) often producing parallel lines in rivers and streams. Some leaves are erect, emerging out of the water. Perennial.

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Celery-leaved Buttercup

Flower: Petals are not notched. 5 sepals. Many stamens. Up to 1cm wide. Fruit: Fruits take the form of an elongated head. Leaves: An annual flower with alternate leaves along the stems. Shiny dark green, palmately lobed leaves. The leaves on the stems are narrower.

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Meadow Buttercup

Flower: 5 glossy yellow petals on furrowed stalks, up to 2.5cm wide and with spreading sepals. Fruit: A cluster of achenes, no larger than half a centimetre across. Leaves: The palmate leaves are variable but have 3 to 7 deeply cut lobes. The end lobe is unstalked.

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Coltsfoot

Flower: Solitary with bright yellow disc and ray florets, up to 1.5cm. The flowers are borne on long, scaly stems which rise straight from the ground. The undersides of the flower are covered in white woolly ... Fruit: A conspicuous dandelion-like, white pappus. Leaves: The leaves are round, heart-shaped or polygonal. The flowers die back before the emergence of the first leaves.

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Common Water Crowfoot

Flower: Solitary flower with 5 white petals, up to 2cm. Fruit: Roundish-oval seed head located in the centre of the flower. Leaves: Leaves are either floating, submerged, or both. The floating leaves are deep-lobed, kidney-shaped and 3-lobed with the side lobes being wider than the central lobe. The submerged leaves are thread-lik...

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Cuckooflower

Flower: 4 petals, clustered, pale to dark lilac, seldom white, up to 2cm. Fruit: A long elongated dry capsule which eventually rolls up and explodes to disperse its many seeds. Leaves: A basal rosette of long-stalked leaves are present. The short-stalked stem leaves are alternate and pinnate. The 1 to 7 pairs of opposite leaflets and 1 terminal leaflet are all separated wide apart.

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Dame's-violet

Flower: Very variable in colour ranging from purple, lilac and white, 4 petals, up to 2cm across. Similar-looking flower to Phlox, but Phlox has 5 petals and not 4. Fruit: Slender, elongated, cylindrical pods, each up to 4 inches long. They emerge outwards from the main stem and then curves upwards. Each pod contains a single row of seeds. Leaves: Lanceolate, mostly stalkless with toothed margins, up to 5 inches long. The base of the leaf is rounded and leaf tip tapers into a point.

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White Dead-nettle

Flower: The stalkless white flowers grow in whorls from the axils of the upper leaves, up to 2.5cm wide. Fruit: Black nutlets. Leaves: Nettle-like leaves. Stalkless, opposite, tips are pointed, arrow-shaped and toothed. Dead-nettles are not Nettles at all; they belong to a different family of plants. Their hairs do not sting, unlike ...

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Broad-leaved Dock

Flower: Triangular to oblong tepals. Growing in loose green spikes that are leafy at their base. Flowers and whole plant turning rusty red by Autumn. Fruit: A 3-winged triangular fruit with 3 to 5 teeth on the upper part and a round, swollen wart. Leaves: Large, oblong, cabbage-like. The basal leaves are broad and heart-shaped with wavy margins.

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Curled Dock

Flower: Oval flattened green flowers in dense leafless spikes that do not spread outwards from the main stem. Fruit: Dark brown, round, winged seeds with oval warts. The wings do not have teeth, as is the case with Broad-leaved Dock. Leaves: Long, narrow and with curly edges. Up to 25cm in length. Curled Dock is named for it's curly leaf margins.

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Clustered Dock

Flower: Green and red flowers, appearing in inconspicuous clusters. Wind pollinated. Fruit: Oval, untoothed, swollen fruit valves. Leaves: The oblong leaves are cabbage-like and between 4 and 8cm wide. They are rounded at the base. This plant is similar looking to Wood Dock (Rumex sanguineus) but Clustered Dock has got zigzag stems and t...

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Least Duckweed

Flower: Insignificant. The flowers consist of 2 stamens and a style. Fruit: Insignificant and minute. Leaves: Duckweed is invasive and mat-forming. It carpets the surface of the water so thick that it can completely block out the light below. The leaves are elliptical, dull green and slightly ridged. The leav...

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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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Hart's-tongue Fern

Flower: No flowers. Ferns reproduce by spores. Fruit: Spores appear in conspicuous stripes on the underside of fronds. Leaves: Evergreen. Grows in clumps. Long, glossy tongue-shaped fronds with pointed tips. The 'scolopendrium' part of the botanical name means 'centipede' and comes from the markings on the underside of the fr...

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Golden-scaled Male Fern

Flower: Golden brown scales on the stalks. Fruit: The spores ripen in August and September. Leaves: Yellowish green when young and turning darker with age. Erect fronds. Shinier than the similar-looking Male Fern (Dryopteris filix-mas) and with a dark spot where the leaflets meet the midrib. The sec...

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Broad Buckler Fern

Flower: Ferns do not produce flowers. They reproduce by means of spores. Fruit: Spores ripen in July and August. Leaves: The scales on the stalks are dark, or dark-centred. The dark centred scales are a good feature for identifying this fern. Dark green, spreading 3-pinnate fronds (leaves) which are broadly triangular i...

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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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Common Fleabane

Flower: Golden yellow daisy-like flowerheads upto 3cm across, flat-topped. 40-100 disc florets and 20-30 ray florets. Fruit: Dry, 1-seeded. Leaves: Silvery green leaves. Narrow, pointed, widest at the base, up to 8cm long. The alternate leaves are covered in a white down. The upper leaves look wrinkly.

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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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Marsh Foxtail

Flower: 6cm flower spikes. Yellow or purplish anthers. Blunt ligules. Fruit: A caryopsis. Leaves: Bluish-green and 12cm (5 inches) in length. Perennial. Marsh Foxtail is much shorter in height than the similar-looking Meadow Foxtail (Alopecurus pratensis). Marsh Foxtail also grows in wet habitats ...

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Snake's Head Fritillary

Flower: Solitary nodding bell-shaped flowers. The flowers have a checkered pattern of various shades of pink and purple. It is not uncommon to see white, uncheckered (albino) specimens. Pollinated by bees. Fruit: Erect, 3-parted capsule. The seeds mature in June and July. Leaves: Grass-like, greyish-green linear leaves. Alternate and stalkless. Rarely found growing in the wild.

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Frogbit

Flower: Each flower has 3 white petals with a yellow basal spot. The flowers are solitary and measure 2 or 3cm across. Fruit: The fruit is globular and berry-like. Leaves: A floating aquatic perennial believed by the ancient Greeks to have been eaten by frogs. The leaves are round or kidney-shaped, 3cm in diameter. Grows in still, fresh water.

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