Hardy's Plantation, Green Lane and Roots Spring
Designation: Local Wildlife Site Ep222
Grid Reference: TL 617 102 Map
Access: Public Access
Site Description: This site is made up of three explicit compartments. Hardy’s Plantation, Green Lane and Roots Spring.
Hardy’s Plantation is a linear strip of ancient woodland which borders the parish boundary of The Rodings.
The canopy consists of old coppiced Hawthorn, Hornbeam standards, Field maple and some Midland hawthorn. The field layer contains Elder and Hazel. The ground layer consists Bluebell, Lords and ladies, Dog’s mercury, Cleaver, Ground ivy, Lesser celandine, Common ivy, occasional Primrose and rare Broad-leaved dock. There is much deadwood both standing and fallen.
The green lane is a national trail and makes up approximately 2km of the Essex Way. It is approximately 3.2m wide, and remains fairly constantly so. It is part of a network of footpaths in the area and is adjacent to arable fields.
The hedge species consist Hornbeam standards and coppice, Blackthorn, Hawthorn, Ash, Field maple, Dog rose, with coppiced Hazel, Spindle, Elm scrub, Honeysuckle and occasional Wild cherry and Goat willow. Ground flora is made up of Lords and ladies, Bugle, Dog’s mercury, Cleaver, Common ivy,, Cow parsley, Herb robert, Broad-leaved dock and occasional Primrose.
Roots Spring consists maiden Oak, standard and coppiced Hornbeam and some felled conifer. Field layer comprises Blackthorn, Elder, Hawthorn and coppiced Hazel. Ground layer in verges consists Dog’s mercury, Lords and ladies, Primrose, Bluebell, White bryony, Garlic mustard, Ground ivy and some Nettle. There is much dead wood, both standing and fallen. Badger, Brown hare, and Woodpecker have been observed here.
Hardy's Plantation, the Green Lane and Roots Spring were designated as a Local Wildlife Site in 1992 because of the hedgerows providing habitat connectivity in the landscape and because of the ancient woodland plants. Both these features are habitats on the Essex Biodiversity Action Plan.
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