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Ferns & Fungi around Martley

In the damp areas of the deciduous woodlands, often on tree roots or rocks, Harts Tongue Fern and Polypody Fern are found, both are common. The delicate Lady Fern grows along the Teme woodlands, while the large clumps of Male Fern dominate in the woodland on the south western end of the Parish. (Tinkers Coppice and Haywood). Adders Tongue Fern, grows in the old quarry fields at Collins Green, this tiny fern, is an indicator of ancient grass lands and can be found along the footpath that crosses the old quarry fields. The most abundant fern in the parish is bracken.


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Many species of fungi appear during the autumn and spring seasons, and again it would need a volume of its own to identify them all. Of the more common and most sort-after are the Field Mushrooms whilst the more unwanted are Yellow Stainer Mushroom, Honey Fungusand the Fly Agarics. We have records of the beautiful Earth Star growing in a garden in the parish.

Grasses, due to the many different habitats in the parish, there is a wide range of grasses to look out for. On the hill sides and woodland edges around Penny Hill we can see the following: various-leaved Fescue, Swamp Meadow Grass, Narrow-leaved Meadow Grass and Lesser Hairy Brome. Many of the commoner species can also be found. In the Kingswood area. Where the woodland tends to be damper, we find Southern Wood-rush, Wood Fescue, Smooth-stalked Sedge. On the heavier soils, species like Wood Small-reed, Wood Club-rush and Flat Sedge dominate. The large Pendulous Sedge can be found on most clay soils and often grows in some of the larger gardens in Martley.

The dryer grasslands of the parish hold Sheep Fescue, Rat’s-tail Fescue, Flattened Meadow Grass plus a wide selection of Bromes which include Rye, Field, Meadow and Smooth. Some damper meadows have grasses like Lesser Tussock Sedge. Roadside verges contain Cockspur, Cocksfoot and Slender Soft Brome.

In other woodlands we can find Wood Medick, Wood Millet and again Pendulous Sedge. Other species recorded in the parish is Meadow Foxtail, and Crested dogs tail, Canary Grass. Quaking Grass is one of the more appealing grasses. Timothy, Yorkshire Fog and Squirrel Tail Fescue are common meadow grasses, while wetter grass land gives us Sweet Vernal Grass and Velvet Bent.


By kind permission of Brian Draper M.B E

Last updated 14/9/05