High in the Black Mountains

The farthest western reaches of Herefordshire, where the Black Mountains rise to Offa’s Dyke, provide dramatic walks and panoramic views. They also provide a suitable home to alpine floral species not found elsewhere locally and for whom these hills are towards the southern and eastern boundary of their range in the UK.

One such plant is Mossy saxifrage (Saxifraga hypnoides), which carpets the grassy crevices among the high rocky scree towards the end of May in a fabulous, breathtaking display.

This year it seemed to bloom in profusion as never before. The delicate beauty of its white flowers and russet stems, all swaying in unison in the fresh breeze, was a joy to behold.

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