Page 1

THE BRAMBLES OF SUFFOLK E . S . EDEES

W. M. H I N D ' S Flora of Suffolk, published in 1889, contains an impressive list of brambles, but the nomenclature is now badly out of date and we do not know what he meant by some of the names, nor can we be sure, in spite of the help from C. C. Babington which he acknowledges in the introduction, that his specimens were always correctly determined. C. E. Salmon (1907) suggested other names for several of them. I have not seen Hind's Rubus specimens apart from a few sheets in Ipswich Museum (IPS). The specimens Salmon examined are no longer at Ipswich and their present location is unknown. The list which follows takes account of Hind's work and Salmon's comments but is mainly the result of recent observations in the field. Records not followed by a name are my own and, except for a few made during a brief visit to Suffolk in 1968, were all made during 1973, when I spent the last two weeks of July and a week in September exploring the county systematically. Three weeks, of course, is quite inadequate for a thorough investigation, but it is long enough for an outline sketch, which is all that this paper attempts. Suffolk specimens of every species except R. plicatus and R. affinis are preserved in my herbarium. The national herbaria have not been searched for records, though the Suffolk specimens of the late B. A. Miles now at Cambridge (CGE) have been examined. Most of these are dated 1966. The letters E and W stand for the botanical vice-counties of East Suffolk (v.-c. 25) and West Suffolk (v.-c. 26) and not for the administrative divisions of the county. T h e numbers (to be distinguished from dates) are references to the 1 km. or 10 km. squares of the national grid. The richest part of Suffolk for brambles is the Stour Valley and the country between the Orwell and the Stour, but much of the interior of the county is disappointing. Apart from Rubus ulmifolius, which is mainly a hedgerow species, most of the Suffolk brambles are to be found in woods, where there is sufficient light and therefore particularly at their edges and along the rides. Assington Thicks (9237), Dodnash Wood (1036), Holbrook Park (1537), and Spelthorn Wood (8748) are very good. Sometimes there is a concentration of species in a small area. For example, on 24th September, 1973, I followed the public footpath on the west side of Sudbourne Great Wood (4153) north from the road for about 500 yards and saw the following species: Rubus ulmifolius, R. lindleianus, R. selmeri, R. nitidoides, R. polyanthemus, R. sublustris, R. echinatoides, and R. dasyphyllus. But usually in Suffolk where brambles are common there are fewer species.


339 The following list comprises thirty-nine species which can be accepted as well attested and correct. But this is not the grand total for the county. About twenty unverified species could be added from the works of Babington (1869), Rogers (1900), Salmon (1911), and Watson (1958). And besides names without specimens there are also specimens without names! I gathered several in 1973 which I have not yet determined. Allowing for errors and duplications it is reasonable to suppose that the Suffolk bramblefloracontains at leastfiftyspecies. THE BRAMBLES OF SUFFOLK

I am very grateful to Mr. F. J. Bingley, the warden of Fiatford Mill, to Mr. A. L. Bull, to Mr. J. R. I. Wood, and especialy to Mr. F. W. Simpson of Ipswich Museum for help in the preparation of this paper. I am also very grateful to the Suffolk Naturalists' Society for meeting my expenses during the week I stayed at Fiatford Mill. Rubus caesius L. The true plant is often to be found where R. ulmifolius is common. It likes the richer soils which most brambles avoid. Hybrids with species of the Triviales section are frequent and no doubt account for some of the varietal names in Hind's Flora. E: 03, 04, 15, 36, 38, 48. W: 04, 07, 75, 76, 77, 85, 87, 94, 95, 96, 97. R. plicatus Weihe and Nees E: Watling Wood near Orford (4052), B. A. Miles (CGE). R. conjungefis (Bab.) W. C. R. Wats. The following records establish the occurrence of this species in both the Suffolk vice-counties. It has been overlooked and may be common. E: Side of main road, Church Walks, near Orford (4151), B. A. Miles (CGE); Stuston Common (1378), A. L. Bull; Walberswick (47), A. L. Bull; Stratford St. Mary (0434), J. R. I. Wood. W: Icklingham (77), A. L. Bull; Mildenhall (7274); Acton (84) in 1886, W. M. Hind (IPS). R. sublustris Lees Frequent near the coast. E: Sea coast north of Southwold (57); Stuston Common (1378), A. L. Bull; Westleton Walks (4567), B. A. Miles (CGE); Westleton Heath (4570); Dunwich Common (4768); Jay's Hill (4686); Fritton (4699); Redgrave Fen (0479); Sudbourne Great Wood (4153); Church Walks, near Orford


340

W:

Suffolk Natural History, Vol. 16, Part 5 (4151), B. A. Miles; Rendlesham Forest, opposite the Thicks (3650); side of field path to Holbrook Park (1437); Brookhill Wood (2144), J. R. I. Wood. Lakenheath, roadside south of the village (78).

R. dumetorum agg. This is a convenient group name for taxa of the Triviales section which have numerous glandulär hairs and erect sepals. Such plants occur in both vice-counties. There is a specimen in CGE which P. D. Seil gathered in 1954 between Icklingham and Tuddenham (52/751724) and named R. britannicus Rogers. This is near the type from Munstead, Surrey, but perhaps not identical with it. A. L. Bull has also gathered brambles from Icklingham and Tuddenham which cannot be more precisely determined at present. R. affinis Weihe and Nees The bramble we now call R. selmeri was formerly thought to be R. affinis and Salmon teils us that a specimen Hind collected at Hopton (50) and called R. affinis is in fact R. selmeri. But a specimen from Gorleston (50) which Hind named R. nitidus is the true R. affinis according to Salmon. I have not seen R. affinis growing in Suffolk nor a specimen of it, but that is no reason for doubting Salmon's judgement. R. gratus Focke E: Holbrook Park (1537, 1538); Belstead Wood (14) in 1858, collector unknown (IPS). W: Knettishall Heath (9480), seen in the bracken in one place. R. sciocharis Sudre E: The Thicks, Rendlesham Forest (3650), B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1968; Watling Wood, near Orford (4052), B. A. Miles. R. nitidoides W. C. R. Wats. E: West side of Sudbourne Great Wood (4153), B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1973; Dodnash Wood (1036). W : Polstead Heath (9940). R. carpinifolius Weihe and Nees Hind's records are doubtful. Salmon considered a specimen from Honington (97) to be R. pulcherrimus (R. polyanthemus). E: Dodnash Wood (1036); Holbrook Park (1537).


THE BRAMBLES OF SUFFOLK

341

R. selmeri Lindeb. (R. nemoralis sensu Watson) Locally plentiful on sandy heaths, especially near the sea. E: Fritton (4699) and Waveney Forest (4600); Beiton (40), W. M. Hind in 1886 (IPS) as R. nitidus-, Sudbourne Great Wood (4153); Sutton Common and Hollesley Heath (34); the Thicks, Rendlesham Forest (3650), B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1968; wood south of Martlesham (2546), B. A. Miles; Watling Wood, near Orford (4052), B. A. Miles; wood by main road near East Bergholt (0535), B. A. Miles; Westleton Walks and Westleton Heath (46); sea coast north of Southwold (57); Brookhill Wood (2144), J. R. I. Wood. W: Tuddenham Heath (7472), A. L. Bull; near Barton Mills (7375). R. laciniatus Willd. A naturalised garden escape easily recognised by its deeply divided leaves. E: Bixley Decoy Wood, near Ipswich (14), F. W. Simpson about 1958, the earliest Suffolk record; Charles Street car park and Wolsey Street, Ipswich (14), F. W. Simpson; Snape (35), F. W. Simpson; Wenhaston (47), R. Mabey; Outney Common, Bungay, in great abundance (3290), E. A. Ellis (Eastern Daily Press, 27th October, 1973). W: Unlocalised record (75), recorder unknown; Brandon Waterworks (78), Breckland Survey. R. lindleianus Lees Frequent in both vice-counties in hedgerows and woods. Hind's records under this name are probably reliable. A specimen from Wiston (93), which Hind named R. salteri, is also R. lindleianus according to Salmon. E: 03, 07, 13, 15, 23, 24, 34, 35, 45, 46, 47. W : 87, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97. R. macrophyllus Weihe and Nees Local in woods in the south-east of the county. Hind's records cannot be accepted without confirmation. A specimen of his from Fakenham (97), gathered in 1882 (IPS), is probably R. polyanthemus. Another from Troston (87) was named R. pulcherrimus (R. polyanthemus) by Salmon. E: The Thicks, Rendlesham Forest (3650), B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1968; Holbrook Park (1537); Dodnash Wood (1036).


342

Suffolk Natural History, Vol. 16, Part 5

R. subinermoides Druce E: Roadside through wood south of Chelmondiston (2036). W: Stack Wood (9940). R. amplificatus Lees E: Bruisyard Wood, near a gate on the western side (3367). Hind's record for Benacre should not be accepted without confirmation. R. pyramidalis Kalt. Woods and thickets, but rare, at least in the western half of the county. E: Fritton, side of road to Ashby Dell (4699); southern edge of Redgrave Fen (0479); Sandy Hill, south of Coddenham (1352); the Thicks, Rendlesham Forest (3650), B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1968; Watling Wood, near Orford (4052), B. A. Miles. W: Westhall Wood (0273), A. L. Bull; Assington Thicks (9237). R. poliodes W. C. R. Wats. This is an overlooked bramble which may prove to be frequent near the coast. The following records are based on specimens collected by B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1968. E: Side of main road near Church Walks, Orford (4151); north edge of Bromeswell Heath by the roadside and on the golf course (2950-3050); Brookhill Wood (2144), J. R. I. Wood in 1973. R. polyanthemos Lindeb. (R. pulcherrimus) Frequent in woods and hedgerows in both vice-counties and common on heaths near the sea. Hind's record of R. maassii for Henstead (48) probably belongs here, but Salmon says the specimen is too poor to name. He is more confident that a specimen from Fakenham (97), which Hind called R. macrophyllus var. glabratus, should be renamed R. pulcherrimus (R. polyanthemos). As we have seen Hind called other specimens of this species R. macrophyllus and R. carpinfolius. E: 03, 13, 24, 25, 27, 34, 35, 38, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 57, 58. W: 77, 87, 88, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98. R. cardiophyllus Muell. and Lefev. (R. rhamnifolius) Widely distributed, but apparently most common in the southeast. There is a fine bush at Walberswick at the beginning of the East Hill footpath to the sea.


THE BRAMBLES OF SUFFOLK

343 E: Watling Wood, near Orford (4052); Sudbourne Great Wood (4153); roadside north of Rendlesham Forest (3650); northern part of Bromeswell Heath (2950); Westleton Walks (46); all recorded by B. A. Miles: south edge of Redgrave Fen (0479); Walberswick (4874); roadside near Brantham (0934); East Bergholt (0635); roadside through wood south of Chelmondiston (2036). W: Ampton Field (8670). R. ulmifolius Schott (R. rusticanus) Common throughout both vice-counties in roadside hedges and present in every 10 km. Square. There is an unlocalised Suffolk specimen (IPS) collected by D. E. Davy in 1795 as R. fruticosus. Fine bushes can be seen at Fiatford Mill. R. procerus P. J. Muell. A garden escape. E: Wenhaston (47) and Thorpe Heath (4560), J. R. I. Wood; road verge against Bruisyard Wood (3367); Foxhall Heath (2144). R. vestitus Weihe and Nees (R. leucostachys) Widely distributed and locally common. Hind's records for Wiston, 1888, as R. leucostachys (IPS), and Coney Weston, 1886, as R. cotispicuus (IPS), both belong here. And so no doubt does a specimen from Sapiston, which Hind named R. conspicuus and Salmon corrected to R. leucostachys. E: 03, 04, 13, 28, 38, 47, 48, 49. W: 77, 84, 86, 87, 88, 93, 94, 96, 97, 98, 07. R. conspersus W. C. R. Wats. W: Arger Fen (9335); Assington Thicks (9237). R. radula Weihe ex Boenn. A local species of woods chiefly in the west of Suffolk. E: Sandy Hill, south of Coddenham (1352). W: Rushfordroad Belts, Euston (9080); north-east corner of Weatherhil Heath along Icknield Way (8176), A. L. Bull; Wordwell (87), abundant along the edge of afirplantation near afirewatch tower. R. echinatus Lindl. E: Redgrave Fen (0479); Holbrook Park (1537); wood south of Chelmondiston (2036); East Bergholt (0939), J. R. I. Wood. W: Near Barton Mills (7375); Sansom's Plantation (8872); Tiger Hill (9235); Assington Thicks (9237).


344

Suffolk Natural History, Vol. 16, Part 5

R. echinatoides (Rogers) Sudre E:

W:

West side of Sudbourne Great Wood (4153), B. A. Miles in 1966 (CGE) and myself in 1973; Holbrook Park (1537); Holly Grove, near Covehithe (5182); wood by main road near East Bergholt (0535), B. A. Miles. Assington Thicks (9237).

R. rudis Weihe and Nees T h e true plant is rare. Hind's record for Mellis is incorrect according to Salmon. W : Bull's Cross Wood (9544); Assington Thicks (9237). R. flexuosus Muell. and Lefev. (R. foliosus) Local in woods but very distinct with its leafy zigzag stem and small pink flowers. It is fairly common near Polstead, where Hind recorded both R. flexuosus and R. foliosus and a third bramble which he called R. pendulinus. These are probably three names for the same thing. E : Holbrook Park (1537); Wolves Wood (0543). W : Stack Wood (9940); Assington Thicks (9237); Arger Fen (9335). R. fuscus agg. We are not sure what Weihe and Nees intended by this name and several related brambles have been grouped under it in this country and abroad. T h e Suffolk plant recorded below can be placed here for the time being. W:

Spelthorn Wood (8748); west side of Park Grove (9276).

R. adamsii Sudre W : Lawn Wood, Withersfield (6348). I have a specimen collected by W. C. R. Watson in 1939 and there is another in C G E collected by B. A. Miles in 1963. R. pallidus Weihe and Nees E: Holbrook Park (1538). R. euryanthemus W. C. R. Wats. E : T h e Grove west of Stradbroke (2075). R. rufescens Muell. and Lefev. Locally common and sometimes abundant in woods. It used to be called R. rosaceus subsp. infecundus and Salmon so determined specimens from Fakenham Wood which Hind had labelled R.


345 rosaceus and R. rosaceus var. hystrix. He was probably right t do so. Certainly R. rufescens is one of the commonest brambles in the wood. E: Wolves Wood (0543); Middle Wood (0549); Holbrook Park (1537, 1538); wood south of Chelmondiston (2036); wood near East Bergholt (0635); Old Park Wood (2657), J. W. Digby; Westleton Walks (4567), B. A. Miles (CGE); Bromeswell Heath (3050), J. R. I. Wood. W: Park Grove (9276); Stack Wood (9940); Arger Fen (9335); Bradfield Woods (9357); Woolpit Wood (9961); Great Grove (9376); Fakenham Wood (9378). R. raduloides (Rogers) Sudre E: East Bergholt (0635), J. R. I. Wood in 1972 and myself in 1973 (field adjoining Lady Anne Wake-Walker's house). R. diversus W. C. R. Wats. E: Martlesham Heath. B. A. Miles found this at 62/253462 in 1966 (CGE) and I found it at 62/255464 in 1973; Kesgrave Hall Wood (2346), J. R. I. Wood in 1973. R. murrayi Sudre W: Spelthorn Wood (8748). R. dasyphyllus (Rogers) E. S. Marshall Woods and wood borders, widely distributed in both vicecounties. This bramble was formerly called R. koehleri var. pallidus, but Hind's records under this name are not reliable. Salmon identified a specimen from Troston with R. dumetorum. On the other hand a specimen from Wiston, which Hind named R. saxicolus, Salmon thought might be R. dasyphyllus. E: 03, 04, 13, 15, 23, 24, 25, 27, 35, 36, 45, 47, 49. W: 77, 86, 87, 93, 95, 96, 97, 07. R. bellardii Weihe and Nees This is a low growing bramble of moist woods distinguished by its large ternate leaves. Many brambles have a few ternate as well as quinate leaves on the same shoot, but in R. bellardii all the leaves are ternate. THE BRAMBLES OF SUFFOLK

W: Spelthorn Wood (8748). References

Babington, C. C. (1869). The British Rubi. London. Hind, W. M. (1889). The Flora of Suffolk. London. Rogers, W. M. (1900). Handbook of British Rubi. London.


346

Suffolk

Natural

History,

Vol. 16, Part

5

Salmon, C. E. (1907). Notes upon Hind's Flora of Suffolk. J. Bot., Lond., 45, 388. Salmon, C. E. (1911). Botany (list prepared in 1906). Victoria History of the County of Suffolk. Watson, W . C. R. (1958). Handbook of the Rubi of Great Britain and Ireland. Cambridge. E. S. Edees, 23 Dartmouth Avenue, Nezvcastle, ST5 3NU.

Staffordshire,

The Brambles of Suffolk  
Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you