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wild flower - The Maer Nature Reserve, Exmouth, Devon - May 2019
This Local Nature Reserve is an area of sand dunes. Before the construction of the road along the sea front, would have been a landward extension of the biggest dunes on the beach.
The warm, sandy soil at the Maer provides a haven for insects. Many unusual solitary Bees and Wasps make their nest tunnels in the sand and get on with raising their larvae out of sight of the casual observer
The harsh soil conditions mean that specialised and rare plants can grow on this site. Many small, unobtrusive plants, including a number of tiny grasses, survive on areas of bare soil eroded by visitors. Sea Holly is locally rare, but grows very well on the seaward side of the nature reserve. Looking like a small blue-grey thistle, Sea Holly is actually a member of the carrot family! There are many different species of Clover growing here, including several nationally important species. Look out for the fluffy flower heads of Hare’s Foot Clover between June and September which, as its name suggests, resemble little rabbit feet – unmistakable.