Thursday, 11 May 2017

Countdown to the BSBI Annual Summer Meeting

Bluebells and Red Campion
 in Flintshire last week
Image: J. Shanklin
With only four weeks to go until the BSBI's Annual Summer Meeting, which this year will be held in Flintshire, I asked organiser Jonathan Shanklin (also BSBI's Field Meetings Secretary and Secretary to our Meetings & Communications Committee) to tell us how things are going. 

Over to Jonathan:

"I visited Flintshire last week and found a stunning display of wildflowers in the lanes and woods. Crosswort, Greater Stitchwort and Red Campions (and Cow Parsley) lined the lane banks, whilst the woods were carpeted with Bluebells, interspersed with patches of Wood-sorrel and Yellow Archangel.

Gorse in Flintshire: but is it Common Gorse or
Western Gorse? Find out on the Summer Meeting!
Image: J. Shanklin 
"There has been plenty to do behind the scenes. Members have been registering for the event, though some of those that have said they are coming have yet to send in their forms – there is still time to add your name to the list of participants. 

"With their details put into the spreadsheet, a favourite is emerging on the choice of location for the excursion, but with the numbers booked in so far, we will have just the one coach.

Gail Quartly-Bishop has organised the transport and some of the after dinner sessions. 

Goronwy Wynne, the former County Recorder, author of the Flora of Flintshire and compiler of Flintshire's Rare Plant Register is giving us a talk on Wednesday evening after dinner. 

David Earl has promised a session on Brambles – Flintshire has 58 species according to the BSBI Database.

More Bluebells and some - is it
Wild or Barren Strawberry?
Find out at the Summer Meeting!
Image: J. Shanklin
Jonathan continued "Remarkably my own county of Cambridgeshire has a similar number – 59, but it is rather bigger. Quite a few County Recorders are coming, so it is a chance for them to compare notes, and for improvers and beginners to gain expert help. 

"There is always something new so my challenge for participants is for everyone to find some new plant that they have never seen before. We will post the results during the week!"

A reminder that one feature of the Annual Summer Meeting is that Jonathan sends me daily reports to share with you all via these pages. This is great for anyone who really can't attend but there is no substitute for actually being there! 

It's not too late to book so why not head over to the Summer Meeting webpage, download the flyer, get your diary out and see if you can make it along to Flintshire next month? The Summer Meeting runs from Monday 5th -  Friday 9th June and it's open to everyone, whether BSBI members or non-members, beginners, improvers or experts. So that includes you!