Botanising in Boston

The Boston CREW (Custodians of Rare and Endangered Wildflowers) gathered on a rare sunny morning last weekend to explore the grasslands of Sitamani  along the road to Impendle.  David Clulow compiled this account. Photos by David and Barbara Clulow, Christeen Grant and Nikki Brighton.

clambering in therocks on sitamani res.

A wonderful wildflower display for our pleasure!

Grasslands, a rocky hillside, we were only able to fossick a fraction of this enchanting nature’s garden.  The ground orchids, as with many other plants, still to show themselves in bloom.  We did find this Eulophia though.

eulophia.res

What we saw kept us clambering – Asclepias albens

asclepias albens david

They really are spectacular and it is always a thrill to find one in the grassland.

Asclepias albens.res

and Scilla (Merwilla) nervosa, Indigofera , Aristea woodii, Rhus discolor, Heliophila, Papaver aculeatum, Pachycarpus natalensis,

Pachycarpus.res

Mentha, Zornia capensis, Rhynchosia, Vigna, Hermannia woodii, Tephrosia, Albuca setosa, Commelina, Ledebouria,  Psammatropha mucronata

31 Psammotropha mucronata 01

Streptocarpus, Striga bilabiata, Satureja compactum, Ornnithogalum graminifolium, Argylobium tuberosum, Crassula obovata,

Crassula obovata

Ajuga, Senecio, Alepidea natalensis, Disa nigrens, Hibiscus aethipicus, Senecio, Lotononis pulchrum, Peucedanum caffrum,

wild parsley seed head

Conjium nigrescens, Indigofera fularis, Lessertia perennans, Thesium pallidium, Oxalis depressa, Pentanisia, Moraea brevistylis, 04 Moraea brevistyla

Pelargonium luridum, Ornithogalum tenuifolium, Hypericum aethiopicum, Asster bakerianus, Eulophia foliosa, Hypericum lalandii

11 Hypericum lalandii

Epilobium capensis, Craterocapsa tarsodes, Psammatropha, Papaver, Pearsonia sessifolia, Haemanthus humulis,

haemanthus albiflos.res

Monopsis, Lobelia, Wahlenbergia, Cucumis, Eriosema distinctum, salignum and kraussianum, Craterocapsa tarsodes

30 Craterocapsa tarsodes 01

numerous ferns and grasses; Buddleja and Ouhout.

photographing Merwilla nervosa on sitamani res

We couldn’t identify everything. Does anyone want to have a go at this one?  Thesium pallidum perhaps?

unidentified plants on Sitamani

This bounty of wildflowers demonstrates very well the reward for maintaining a judicious burning programme, careful protection from excessive grazing, leaving the environment to natural selection, the occasional buck, bird or serval.

25 Caterpillar chomping Albuca setosa

The reward is the fullsome enjoyment, in which we were privileged to immerse ourselves.

Boston CREW Sitamani.res

In early 2013, we will be starting a Midlands CREW group to survey patches of natural vegetation in the area for threatened plant species.  Should you be interested in joining this group, please contact Nikki at info@midlandsconservancies.org.za or 083 473 3074   For more information about CREW see: http://www.sanbi.org.za/programmes/threats/crew

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7 thoughts on “Botanising in Boston

  1. David

    As one who appears in this stupendous presentation, disclosing the delights of being a CREW member, I should stand back and be modest. But alas, the pleasure is too extreme……lucky are those who have the opportunity and initiative to take the tide when it is at its full, and revel in the enjoyment, which is there for those who test the waters.

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    1. Nikki Brighton

      Besides a wonderful morning with great friends and beautiful flowers, I also learnt a new word – “fossicking”, discovered a way to tie my shoelaces so they don’t come undone and feasted on the yummiest date loaf and freshly plucked plums. Not bad for a morning’s work.

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      1. Christeen

        Well done Nikki and Dave, between you Boston is shining bright, a jewel of wonderful discovery, joy of friendship AND top visited Blog on the busiest day! 🙂

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  2. Pingback: Blogging, Botanising and Mbona « Plant Abundance

  3. Sky

    And Thank You to the CREW for stunning job on this presentation – and putting Boston on the Botanical map.
    Well done guys – maybe we will join in on the next venture.

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