The botanists are here

In the rambla at Las Negras

In the rambla at Las Negras

Yesterday evening, a group of botanists from Kew Gardens arrived in Las Negras for their annual field trip. This is the 24th consecutive year they have been here and they spend 11 nights in Las Negras, using the village as a base from which to explore the flora of the Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata. Digby set up their first visit in 1989. This morning, we met up with them during their walk up the rambla from Las Negras which comes out on the road above Las Hortichuelas Altas.
Further up the rambla

Further up the rambla

We did not have the time to accompany them all the way and besides, I could not scramble up some of the steeper ascents with my broken arm but we nevertheless enjoyed an interesting couple of hours with them.
Broomrape

Broomrape

I thought this plant, which I noted a week ago, might be a cistanche, but the professors confirmed it as a broomrape.
Rare daisy

Rare daisy

Also, I had previously thought this daisy was not particularly out of the ordinary, having come across it in various locations, but they informed me that it was,in fact, quite a rare variety.
Weasel's snout

Weasel’s snout

There are plenty of wild flowers out at the moment for them to study and many of these we have recently featured on this blog but I do not think we have posted a photo of this little plant, weasel’s snout, before.
Spanish festoon

Spanish festoon

Digby managed to capture a good shot of a Spanish festoon butterfly, not at all common these days, alighting on an echium.
Our dogs in the shade

Our dogs in the shade

The sun was quite fierce this morning. We are used to it but we noticed some of the paler students were turning pink. Our dogs sensibly sat in the shade when plants were being studied.
Walking along the rambla

Walking along the rambla

Tomorrow the group are visiting the botanical gardens in Rodalquilar before going on to the badlands near Tabernas. We will meet up with them again on Saturday when they are doing the coastal walk from Las Negras to El Playazo.

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About Margaret Merry

I grew up in Falmouth, Cornwall, England where, after leaving Falmouth High School, I spent a year at Falmouth School of Art. Then followed three years at Hornsey College of Art in London where I obtained a Diploma in Art and Design. I then spent a post-graduate year at the West of England College of Art in Bristol where I gained an Art Teacher?s Diploma and a Certificate in Education of the University of Bristol. I lived and worked in Truro for over 30 years and became one of Cornwall's most popular artists. My paintings have been exhibited in New York, Tokyo, Paris and London and have been bought by collectors from all over the world. I have published 4 books which became local bestsellers - 'The Natural History of a Westcountry City', 'Margaret Merry's Cornish Garden Sketchbook', 'Sea & Sail' and 'Tidal Reaches'. In 2002 I moved to Spain and now live in the little coastal village of Las Negras in the heart of the Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata. I now get my inspiration from the dramatic scenery of Andalucia and its old cities, towns and villages which I usually capture in watercolour. I also enjoy figurative art, particularly nudes and dancers. For these paintings I use artists' soft pastels. I have written and illustrated 3 children's books - The Wise Old Boar, The Lonely Digger and The Adventure of Princess The Pony - which have been published in the USA.
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One Response to The botanists are here

  1. angela bell says:

    Looks like a great time for botanizing! How is your arm Margaret. \My Mum broke hers at Chritmas while staying here and has just been signed off from the hospital. They said she was amazing at 89 !

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