Thursday, 5 July 2007

Knapweeds

The flowers of Greater and Common Knapweed are stunning on local grasslands at the moment - and the insects are loving it. Many types of bees and bugs can be seen gorging on the nectar of the attractive flower-heads, so engrossed that they often ignore the distraction of a large camera being thrust at them.

A large hoverfly perhaps?

The name Knapweed is interesting - as it's usually found on chalk, is the plant merely a pointer to the knapable flints that lie beneath it, or is there a closer link?

Get in there my son!

A small cluster of white knapweeds were seen today - an local aberation or an interloper species, I wonder?
Knapweeds are part of the vast thistle family, and so is a relative of the Musk or Nodding Thistle, below.

3 comments:

Tony Morris said...

Great post. Do you know the name of the beetle on picture 3? I took a similar picture of one on Knapweed by the Monument last week. The flowers make such a good setting for SIx-spot Burnets, Skippers and Marbled Whites etc, there are a real photographic prop!

Tony Morris said...

Hi Steve, I found this one one of the BTCV sites:
Knapweed is also known as Black or Lesser Knapweed. The word 'knap' means 'knob' - "knobweed".
So I suppose it's from the flower head before it opens,#
Tony

Steve said...

Sorry Tony, I haven't tracked down that beetle yet.

Your discovery of the link between knap and knob seems to illustrate one of the other meanings of knap, per today's post.