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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

11 April, 2015

Pignut: the pigs nut | Nature Notes from Dorset

Pignut (Conopodium majus) may seem an odd name for a flower and one might ponder on how it came about! The answer is quite simple; pignut is a member of the carrot family and as such has a well formed tap root which is more bulbous and not as long as carrots you might buy at the greengrocers (or, more likely these days, the supermarket). It is, in fact, nut shaped and was sought out and eaten by free ranging pigs who had a real taste for them. The plant became known as the pigs nut and is also called groundnut, earthnut and hognut.
Members of the carrot family can be tricky to sort out but pignut is quite a small flower but has the classic umbelifer head that is common across the whole family.

Read more: Pignut: the pigs nut | Nature Notes from Dorset