Spending time with the Devil.


Blawhorn Moss NNR

At Blawhorn at the moment there is a lovely display of devils-bit scabious, just on the edge of the reserve. This is a late flowering plant and as there isn’t much else in flower at the moment there were loads of pollinators using it. It is tucked away out of the breeze and so I took 10 minutes to sit down and contemplate this beautiful blue flower and its users. As I sat and watched I counted at least 4 species of hoverfly, 1 bumble bee and several species of flies all frantically searching the flowers for nectar and pollen. It was probably my best 10 minutes of the day and I reminded myself to do something like this everyday. And the dog enjoyed it as well.

Once back in the office I looked up to see how it gets it name. Well “scabious” because it was thought to be a cure for scabies and also the sores resulting from the bubonic plague. I don’t know if this has been shown to work scientifically but worth remembering anyway just in case. And “Devil’s bit” because it has short black roots and these are supposed to be as a result of the Devil getting really cross with the plant curing all these illnesses that he was responsible for so he tried to bite off the roots to kill the plant. Again not proven scientifically.




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