We ventured south to Devon for the festive season, to visit our relatives George and Linda at West Lake Orchards.
They are the other half of our botanical exchange.
Inspired by the original Botanical Exchange Club of the 1830's, and the pressed herbarium sheets from collectors around the UK now in the Robert Dick Collection at Caithness Horizon Museum, Thurso near where I live, we decided to document the plants on our own land and a couple of nearby locations we have permissions to pick, by making a pressed herbarium, and exchange duplicate sheets with each other to compare plants and flowering times etc.
It's a long-term project, and we are all learning how to make herbarium sheets that will not only look beautiful, but will be of use to botanists in the future, so everything is archival with detailed labels on each sheet - a bit of double checking might be needed!
This December we packed a selection of our north herbarium sheets to take with us to give George and Linda in Devon.
They have special Culm grassland on their land, and was recently listed as a County Wildlife Site after a site inspection by Devon Wildlife Trust Nature Improvement area advisor Michael Symes.
Click here to read more about Culm grassland on Devon Wildlife Trusts website.
The flower below is a cowslip. I am puzzled as to why the tips of the petals have turned green after pressing - any info welcome!