Denge Woods: The Warren

The Warren is cleared of scrub with a handful of retained trees, and encompassed by ancient beech, oak and sweet chestnut woodland. There is a diverse carpet of primrose, vetches, trefoils, salad burnet, speedwells and orchids, adorned with day-flying moths and butterflies; duke of burgundy fritillaries, dingy skippers, green hairstreaks, brimstones, red admirals and burnet companion moths. The dukes are females and there are moving from primrose to primrose laying on the underside of the yellowing leaves. The isolated population in Denge is the only published location for this species in Kent and their persistence in such small patches of habitat, albeit carefully managed, is remarkable. The clearing is filled with the dull green spikes of common twayblades but lit by many greater butterfly orchids; it is a good year too for inconspicuous fly orchids which are numerous on the edges of the scrub and woodland. Down the path at ‘Bonsai Bank’, the same assemblage is present but lady orchids are more common, most tucked under the protective cloak of scrub and sword-leaved helleborine is also here. It proves to be a hot summer day full of small riches.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Sherry Felix says:

    Lovely collection.

  2. Steve Parr says:

    Thanks Sherry – we had one of those really good days…

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