Plant of the week – 22 March 2021- Lathraea clandestina purple toothwort, clandestine

If you go down to the River Esk today you may be in for a visual surprise. At the base of an alder, crack willow or poplar on the river bank there may be a startling carpet of intense purple flowers with the exotic appearance of an orchid, but stemless, emerging straight out of the ground.

Plant of the Week – 30th November – Yew Taxus baccata

Yew, Taxus baccata, is a long-lived native tree. Some trees are thought to be 1000s of years old. All parts of the plant are toxic apart from the fleshy aril which surrounds the seed. The anti-cancer drug Taxol has been developed from paclitaxel, produced by many Taxus species.