Scabiosa atropurpurea   Sweet Scabious I

Scabiosa atropurpurea

You really don't expect to find any more flowers in a season in early November but on this sunny day in Kent you might well have thought late August was the time of year.

Our trip to watch Ramsgate play AFC Wimbledon had gone much more smoothly than we'd expected and we had arrived in the seaside town three hours before kick off. Time for a stroll along the front to see what we could find. As well an unidentifiable hybrid Eleagnus (Oleaster) there were still a few flowers on Inula crithmoides (Golden Samphire) and further on, several naturalised plants of Scabiosa atropurpurea on the chalk cliff tops. Originally garden escapes, there have been records according to Stace, of this southern European introduction in west Cornwall and east Kent. Well you don't much more east in Kent than Ramsgate so this one was a very pleasing find. As with many of these exotic naturalised species they usually don't take much identifying although I have to say that this one looks a bit like a small dahlia - except for the seed head of course.

The game, by the way, was fairly rubbish.

Top of chalk cliffs, Ramsgate, 12th November 2005

Added on November 24th 2005, updated 30th January 2012

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