It’s Sunday morning, sunny, and I’ve woken up at the same time I would for work. I’m meeting one of the finest naturalists I know, who also happens to be a very good friend of mine. We’re heading to Cherry Hinton Chalk Pits in Cambridge to try and find some moon carrot.
No, we’re not mad. It’s real and looks a lot like cow parsley. Instead of writing about the challenges we faced, the fun we had, and the outcome, I’ve decided to adapt a song.
Sung to the tune of “Moon River” written by Henry Mancini
Moon carrot, really hard to find
I’ll come across you in style, some day
Arrgghh, shear chalk-cliff, you knee scraper
Wherever you’re growing, I’m coming your way
Two drifters, off to find a plant
There’s such a lot of plant, to find
We’re after the same rainbow’s end, waiting at the pits
My Harding-Morris friend, moon carrot, and me
Wasn’t that lovely?
And to finish, here are some photos of the morning spent failing to find some moon carrot, but finding lots of other interesting plants.
A lovely specimen of robin's pin cushion gall on this wild rose (Photo: Jack Plumb)
A six-spot burnett moth enjoying the flowers as much as we were (Photo: Jack Plumb)
Such a beautiful orange-red colour on this Scarlet Pimpernel (Photo: Jack Plumb)
Gall mites! (Photo: Jack Plumb)
Not moon carrot, but the very closely related wild carrot. The easy tell-tale sign here is the red flower in the centre. Other signs include the length and branching of the bracts - they're much shorter and simpler looking in moon carrot. More information (Photo: Jack Plumb)