Page 1


A SELECTION OF MRS. IRENE VAUGHAN'S RECORDS OF THE WILD ROSES OF SUFFOLK E. M. HYDE Early in 1979, at the age of 90, Mrs. Vaughan moved to Woodbridge from Wales, where she had lived for many years. She was no stranger to Suffolk, having made frequent Visits over the years to her father's family home in Blaxhall. She joined the Suffolk Naturalists' Society in 1981. She brought with her a great Store of botanical knowledge and a particular interest in wild roses. She had been a Rosa referee for the Botanical Society of the British Isles from 1975-1984. Within a few years she increased our knowledge of the distribution of several of the less common Rosa species in Suffolk. Much of her recording was done in the course of long walks into the countryside within a few miles of Woodbridge. Every year until 1987 she sent me lists of the plants she had found. Many, not necessarily roses, were rare or uncommon species, and several were new to East Suffolk, or to the County as a whole. In 1987 she summarised for us her Suffolk rose records, no mean task for someone of her great age. Accounts of the non-botanical events of her life have appeared in obituaries in the national and local press and in Watsonia (the journal of the B.S.B.I.) (Connoly, 1994). She read history at Oxford in the days when women were not officially granted degrees. She served in the First World War, first in Serbia as an ambulance driver, and then in the W.R.N.S. in Gibraltar, where she met and married Captain H. R. H. Vaughan, R.N. Having settled in Carmarthenshire, they worked for many years for the conservation of wildlife and there began Mrs. Vaughan's major contribution to the botany of Wales. She was a kind and generous friend, a wonderful correspondent and an inspiration to all who met her. We were fortunate to have her, if only for a few years, in Suffolk. Rosa canina L., Dog-rose. Almost ubiquitous. Mrs. Vaughan particularly mentions its occurrence in harsh ecological conditions, such as 'boatyards in Woodbridge' or 'river or estuarine banks'. Rosa arvensis Huds., Field-rose. Again very frequent, and believed by Mrs. Vaughan to be much under-recorded. Rosa pimpinellifolia L., Burnet Rose. Mrs. Vaughan knew of the Dunwich site for this species. She also recorded: Shingle Street, on fixed dunes near Coastguards, 1986. Little Blakenham Chalkpit N.R. DĂźring a joint expedition, "Debbie', from the Suffolk Wildlife Trust, spotted a tiny plant, which Mrs. Vaughan recognised as this species. Rosa stylosa Desv., Columnar-styled Dog-rose. Listed as 'rare or overlooked' in Simpson's Flora, this species was indeed found by Mrs. Vaughan to have been overlooked. Kesgrave, lane hedge near Grange Farm, 25/5/1977. Woodbridge, Haugh Lane, 16/10/1984. Monewden, M a r t i n s Meadows, 8/8/1986 and waste ground by Church, Oct. 1981. Dallinghoo, abundant between Church and Pound Corner, 20/5/1981.

Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 31 (1995)


Suffolk Natural History, Vol. 31

Clopton, frequent in lane hedges, including hedge towards Burgh, 5/10/1981. Between Ufford Thicks and Bredfield, 1982 and in Bredfield itself, 7/9/1982. Framsden, roadside hedge, 8/7/1981. Eyke, edge of Little Tyes Wood, 1981. Blaxhall, Marshpool Meadows, beside water ditch. Mariesford, in hedge, 7/7/1983. Boy ton, southern perimeter of wood, 15/4/1984, and Crag Farm hedge, 24/10/1981. Shottisham, road hedge near village. Bruisyard Churchyard, Sept. 1983. Between Hacheston and Gt. Glemham. 14/9/1982. Theberton, 24/10.1978. Combs Wood, edge of woodland, 18/5/1987. Rattlesden, 22/10/1963. (Det. R. Melville). Rosa tomentosa Sm., Harsh Downy-rose. Mrs. Vaughan considered this species to be frequent in Suffolk hedges, except on very light sandy soil. Her records include: Combs Wood, field bank formerly hedge, 26/5/1987. Wolves Wood, scrub at edge of wood, 15/11/1980. Bentley, alongside Dodnash Wood, 1989. Clopton, lane hedge, 24/8/1982. Dallinghoo, lane hedge, Nov. 1987. Hedge between Framsden and Ashfield. Roadside hedge N. E. of Framlingham. Road verge between Blaxhall and Tunstall Heath, 1983. Blaxhall, flood wall of marshy meadow, 1980. Theberton, scrub on former airfield and lane hedge, 1980. Dunwich, hedge of lane towards cliffs. Lavenham, railway cutting, 1981. Polstead, Potash Lane, 1981. Rosa sherardii Davies, Sherard's Downy-rose. Mrs Vaughan discovered the first known Suffolk specimen of this species in a field hedge at Gt. Barton in June 1982. Rosa obtusifolia Desv., Round-leaved Dog-rose. Another overlooked rose. Before Mrs. Vaughan came to Suffolk, there were only two East Suffolk records. Her records include: Between Ufford Thicks and Bredfield, 1982 and 7/7/1987. Between Monewden and Hasketon; hedge of footpath from Hasketon to A I 2 , 14/7/1982. Hedge between Hasketon and Boulge, June 1983. Dallinghoo, hedges, 20/8/1982. Clopton, 4/8/1982. Mendham, 26/9/1982. Blaxhall, village hedge 1980, and road hedge towards Dunningworth Hall, 1983. Eyke, Tyes Wood, 26/6/1981. Theberton, lane hedge, 15/6/1982 and in scrub on disused airfield, TM4365, 18/6/1980. Market Weston Fen N. R„ West Suffolk, 27/6/1985. Rosa rubif-inosa L., Sweet-briar. Mrs. Vaughan found it to be scattered in localities mainly near the coast or on former heathland, but was not familiar with its distribution in the north of the County. Her records include: Dallinghoo, several small plants along verge in village 1982, and also in Gull Lane, 9/6/1981. Boyton, road verge, TM345465, 1980. Also in village in hedgebank, TM382475, Sept. 1983. Hollesley Bay Colony, scrub on bank of creek, TM372442, 22/7/1980. Hollesley Heath, scrub hedge on roadside, TM355467, 1981., and elsewhere in this parish. Blaxhall, Stone Common and a planted hedge in village, May, 1983. Snape,

Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 31 (1995)



several bushes in lane behind Maltings and about 10 large bushes, TM422580, 11/9/1982. Heritage Path, Hazlewood Common; mature bushes and seedlings on both sides of path at scrub edge of mixed woodland, 11/9/1982. Theberton, edge of former airfield, 1982(7). Market Weston Fen N. R., TL985787, 27/6/1985. Rosa micrantha Borrer ex Sm., Small-flowered Sweet briar. Mrs. Vaughan's records include a site in Theberton in a roadside scrub hedge, TM422653, Oct. 1981, and two in Iken. Also in Dallinghoo with R. stylosa, 10/11/1984 and earlier, and a 1963 record from Kesgrave in a lane hedge at Grange Farm, det. R. Melville. Mrs. Vaughan deposited a large number of Rosa specimens in Ipswich Museum Herbarium, which are open to inspection by anyone who is interested in this difficult group of plants. References Graham, G. G. and Primavesi, A. L. (1993). Roses of Great Britain and Ireland. B.S.B.I. London. Connoly, A. P. (1994). Irene Vaughan - Obituary. Watsonia 20: 175. Enid Hyde, Parkside, Woolverstone, Ipswich, Suffolk IP9 1 AR

Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 31 (1995)

Plate 12: Field Rose, Rosa arvensis Huds., a common hedgerow species with creamy white flowers. (p. 41).

Plate 13: Burnet Rose, Rosa pimpinellifolia L., a rare species in Suffolk with characteristic rounded fruits (inset) which are purple-black w h e n fully ripe. (p. 41).

Plate 14: Sweet Briar or Eglantine, Rosa rubiginosa agg. L., a frequent species with bright pink flowers and sweet-smelling, glandulär leaves. (p. 42).

A selection of Mrs Irene Vaughan's records of the wild roses of Suffolk  
A selection of Mrs Irene Vaughan's records of the wild roses of Suffolk