Walking in Hardcastle Crags on Saturday we were admiring the hazy effect of hundreds of Wood Melick flower heads, on the track side just above Gibson Mill. This is a fairly widespread grass in Calderdale.
I mentioned the much rarer Mountain Melick that we had been unable to find at Hardcastle Crags since the days of our late President, Frank Murgatroyd. He wrote in his Flora of the Halifax Parish that “It is very rare and known only in the Hebden valley on a calcareous outcrop, where it has persisted for many years”. However he was not able to find it for us on many visits since my time in the Society. Since we sadly lost him, several people have kept visiting the spot, but no sign of it was seen.
However, on Saturday 18th June, Annie Honjo found it! I persuaded Peachysteve and Philip Marshall to come and confirm it on Sunday, and they were satisfied it is Mountain Melick, Melica nutans. Charles Flynn also added his opinion that we had relocated it after seeing the photo.
So we are really pleased that it is still in existence there. The National Trust have kept the tree cover off the rocks for the sake of the special assemblage of plants that grows there.