Hooke Park Wood
Renowned for the display of bluebells and spring flowers.
|Hooke Park Wood|
Hooke Park Wood: top marks -
Dorset Life magazine says that people divide in to two groups, those that think the best site in Dorset for bluebells is Hooke Park Wood and those that have never been to Hooke Park Wood. Being in the second group we decided to visit and the spring flowers, especially the bluebells, are superb in late April and early May. Whether they are, indeed, the best display in Dorset is totally subjective and, in any event, I do not think bluebell watching is a competitive sport!
Whilst there looking at the bluebells we were surprised and intrigued by a collection of very modernistic buildings in the wood. Research when we got home revealed that the wood is the base for the Architectural Association's School of Architecture campus for timber construction. The buildings in the wood were designed by, and built by, students at the school. These are interesting to see but it is also good news fore the woodland itself. Over the years the natural woodland here has been 'polluted' by the planting of conifers and the school are cutting these down and using them for their design and construction projects and replacing them with broad leaf trees which are, of course, far more beneficial for the natural environment and gradually the wood will be restored to full health.
Top marks to the School of Architecture, its students and its bluebells!
|NVC Community||Description||No of Species|
Fraxinus excelsior - Acer campestre - Mercurialis perennis [Ash/Field Maple/Dog's Mercury] woodland
Fraxinus excelsior - Sorbus aucuparia - Mercurialis perennis [Ash/Rowan/Dog's Mercury] woodland
Quercus robur - Pteridium aquilinum - Rubus fruticosus [Pedunculate Oak/Bracken/Bramble] woodland
Alnus - Fraxinus - Lysimachia nemorum [Alder/Ash/Yellow Pimpernel] woodland
Crataegus monogyna - Hedera helix [Hawthorn/Ivy] scrub
Arrhenatherum elatius [False Oat-grass] grassland
Fagus sylvatica - Mercurialis perennis [Beech/Dog's mercury] woodland
Cynosurus cristatus - Centaurea nigra [Crested Dogs-tail/Black knapweed] grassland
Holcus lanatus - Juncus effusus [Yorkshire Fog/Soft Rush] rush pasture
Juncus effusus - Galium palustre [Soft Rush/Marsh Bedstraw] rush pasture