Welcome to the blog, friends! Here you’ll find posts about my floodplain meadow research, science communication and digital design. Find out more about the inspiration for this blog over on the About page.
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Hares and harebells are both iconic species of our meadows that are inextricably linked with our agricultural heritage and our cultural landscape. One of my favourite meadow mammals is the European brown hare (Lepus europaeus). Over the centuries we’ve woven a rich mythology around this enigmatic creature and it’s always enchanting to see them onContinue reading “Of hares and harebells”
This month I’ve been thinking about dandelions. April has brought with it plenty of sunshine and cheerful dandelions have popped up pretty much everywhere. I have to admire this tenacious little plant. Often dismissed as a weed, it’s a thriving ecological and medicinal powerhouse. One of the first flowers to come out in spring, itsContinue reading “Contemplating dandelions”
This blog was first posted by the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) here. Everything happens somewhere in time and space, and a sense of place can provide important context when communicating your environmental stories. There are many types of map; which one you choose to use can affect how influential your communicationContinue reading “Mapping your science stories”
This blog first appeared on the Floodplain Meadows Partnership website here. Our traditional floodplain hay meadows are a haven for biodiversity, but they are also part of our agricultural landscape and depend on the annual cycle of haymaking and aftermath grazing to maintain their value. These meadows show characteristic seasonal patterns of growth and floweringContinue reading “Working with seasonal growth on floodplain meadows”
This webinar was created in collaboration with my former colleagues at the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Managers. It formed part of my CENTA work placement and was a thoroughly enjoyable experience. You can find a recording of the webinar below and a pdf of the slides with hyperlinks to all the resources here.Continue reading “Webinar: Science Communication for Ecologists and Environmental Managers”
Here endeth the second field season of my PhD, researching some fabulous floodplain meadows in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. I was fortunate to be able to complete a full field season this year after being curtailed by lockdowns in 2020. This year my research has been hung, drawn and quartered, which wasn’t nearly as painful asContinue reading “Hung, Drawn and Quartered: a meadow season”
Burnet: A most precious herb, the continual use of it preserves the body in health and the spirit in vigour. Culpeper Great burnet (Sanguisorba officianalis) is a stately denizen of our floodplain meadows – a larger cousin to the more diminutive salad burnet (Sanguisorba minor) that you might find in upland calcareous grasslands or asContinue reading “Burnet and Blue”
I’m delighted that this poem was selected as a finalist in the Floodplain Meadows Partnership Arts Competition 2021 and will be appearing in their 2022 calendar alongside some other fantasitc meadow-inspired artworks. This poem celebrates the full story of floodplain meadows, showing the importance of flooding and haymaking to the natural bounty that lives inContinue reading “Forever Meadow: a Poem”
This poster was produced for the Open University 2021 Poster Competition and delightfully won both the People’s Choice Poster and the Judge’s Choice Best Use of Imagery categories. Captain Quad Rat and I are very pleased! You can download this from Open Research Data Online.
Haymaking has changed dramatically over the last century and is set to change again under new agricultural legislation. Where once the aim was simply to preserve a good yield of summer sunshine to last the winter, the focus up now is increasingly on achieving an optimum balance between producing healthful fodder whilst also promoting biodiversityContinue reading “Fifties Family Farming”
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