Lanarkshire, v.c.77

BSBI Recorder

The County Recorder is Michael Philip.

Willow Cottage, 3 Marlage, Larkhall, Lanarkshire  ML9 3DJ

Email: botany@opus44.co.uk 

Scroll down to find out about forthcoming field meetings, to download copies of the Lanarkshire Botany Newsletter and much more!

Lanarkshire

The vice-county of Lanarkshire is large, encompassing the current political entities of South Lanarkshire, North Lanarkshire, a large portion of the City of Glasgow and part of East Dunbartonshire. In total, this area involves 661 tetrads (2,459 sq. km).

The landscape has remote hills and high moorland in the south, upland and fertile lowland farm country, areas of former mining development (whose spoil-heaps, or ‘bings’ as they are locally called, provide much botanical interest), and the extensive urban sprawl of greater Glasgow.

Essentially it is all about the Clyde, formed from streams in the Lowther Hills, meandering across farmland from Biggar to Carstairs, plunging over the spectacular Falls of Clyde at Lanark, developing grandeur along the Clyde Valley, and becoming one of Scotland’s most celebrated and historic rivers through the centre of Glasgow. Along this major watercourse, many tributaries emerge from steep-sided valleys and gorges, which offer both challenges and rewards to the botanist.

Following the high level of recording seen in recent years, ensuring a thorough Lanarkshire record for the new Atlas 2020, we are looking forward to some new kinds of fieldwork activity.

We hope to undertake smaller local projects and species studies - as well as exploration of the still large number of remote monads in our vice-county which have never yet been recorded. This apparent lack of curiosity on our part is to some extent explained by the fact that, until quite recently, much of the recording in Lanarkshire was done at tetrad (and even at hectad) level.

Field meetings

Our outings programme is currently suspended, pending the lifting of restrictions. When we are able to arrange outings again, the programme will be made available here.

Recording

Records of plants are welcome (at 1 km or 2 km square resolution, and higher, preferably 8-figure GR, for uncommon species) plus any notes, images and queries regarding these.

vc77 summary 2020

*NEW* In spite of our having to do fieldwork as individuals rather than enjoying the normal programme of outings, over 15,000 records were amassed - making 2020 our second-best year ever for data gathering.

Two major fieldwork projects were undertaken: a detailed study of 11 urban monads in western Glasgow, and a detailed study of the flora of Dalserf Parish (a rural area of around 6 square miles between the M74 and the River Clyde, south-east of Larkhall). Highlights included first vice-county records for Picris hieracioides and Lactuca virosa - both now arriving in urban Glasgow, and a large new population of Hypopitys monotropa on a brown-field site near Kirkintilloch. Record cards were also completed in a range of locations, from East Kilbride in the west to Dolphinton in the east, and from Caldercruix in the north to Leadhills in the south. And our Lanarkshire network of botany enthusiasts continues to grow, so you are welcome to get in touch whether you’re resident in the area or a visitor.

We have an occasional newsletter with up-to-date news from across the vice-county: scroll down to download your copy. If anyone would like a copy of the current newsletter or the field programme for the coming months, please email me and ask for it!

And if you're ever in our part of the world, please lend us some of your time and assistance. There's always something going on!

Michael Philip, January 2021

County Recorder's report

Read the 2020 report.