In my college days in wet Wales, our occasional games of football and rugby were, for obvious reasons, called "bog-wading". Today I pulled on my wellies (only one of which leaks) and waded around some of the few wet areas of mid-Kent.
This is not my normal habitat, and I know little of the flora of wetlands, so Gibbins Brook near Sellindge is an interesting place, with plenty of species I'd not see before.
Bogbean is a lovely flower, each one a hairy cross contrasting with the smooth unopened buds above.
A Small Copper kindly landed on one flower.
This is, I believe, Marsh Valerian, a much smaller, subtler plant than its red namesake.
Large Red Damselflies were very active, except when being otherwise active, blending in with the similar colours of the pond vegetation.
This may be Bog Stitchwort (it's great reading the guesses of a novice -available for guided walks at the usual rates)
Hothfeld Heathlands have blossomed with Cottongrass, and were otherwise notable for much larger patches of Lousewort than in recent years.
A Red Poplar Beetle was seen, as was an early Brown Argus.
A lovely couple of visits, but the third was chastening - last year the Water-Violets at Ashford Warren was stunning but this year there were only a dozen flowering stems - perhaps early in the season, but the omens are not good.
It was, however, good to see our trusty Little Owl in the usual place on the dead stump near Northbourne.
Nothing about Kingsdown today, but I should report a very successful village street party last night, with great bands and a marvellous atmousphere. The pub was almost drunk dry, I hear.