I made a quick visit this morning, as I have never visited this site before and was surprised to see a self-seeded White Poplar, Populus alba, about 2′ high. I have never seen a seedling of this species and thought they only spread by suckers. It is a tree that is not seen in the wild and is always planted. I wonder if there was a White Poplar there before they graded the land and this is a sucker from its roots? Formerly called in old English, the Abele tree.

As Steve observed there is a lot of Fern Grass, Catapodium rigidum, probably more than you will see again in future years. It is such a diminutive grass, about 2″ high from ground to top, it can take a while to notice it and then you will see it everywhere. It is only when I looked at the photo I saw the tiny ‘insect’!


On the right, before the unsympathetic new bridge, between the 2nd and 3rd lamp standards, there are a few clumps of Soft Brome, Bromus hordeaceus. But with them is another Brome which I think is Smooth Brome, Bromus racemosus. If so, it is rarely seen in West Yorkshire and there are only a handful of sightings. As you can see from the photos, the soft brome is very hairy and more compact and the smooth brome has no hairs but more scabrid. Also it has a looser panicle with longer branches and droops more.

                                           Smooth B. top  Soft B. bottom  


                                                    Soft Brome


                                                        Smooth Brome

Oh, and the small foxtail that you saw Steve, is a marsh foxtail, Alopecurus geniculatus