If you would like to read my Dorset nature notes about any of these featured species or sites please click on the post title

About Me

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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!

30 August, 2015

Quaking Grass: purple hearts | Nature Notes from Dorset

With so many species of grass being very similar to each other it is a relief to discover one that is unique and that cannot possibly be confused with another; one so distinctive almost anyone with the smallest degree of knowledge could name it. Quaking grass (Briza media) is certainly one such species.
Quaking grass has distinctive little purple heart shaped florets on fine stems that dance in the wind. They are so distinctive one rarely even looks at the leaves which are quite nondescript and towards the base of the stem. Quaking grass is primarily a species of chalk grassland but it can occur in other habitats provided the soil is lime-based; calcareous.
Now actually I lied to you at the outset. Why? Well there is a lesser quaking grass and a greater quaking grass.

Read more: Quaking Grass: purple hearts | Nature Notes from Dorset