Marmalade and Burdock

They work well together.

I should start by apologising for blogging in the middle of the world cup final but.. I haven’t got a television set and England aren’t in it anyway (and I thought they were going to win it again πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ ) well, you know….

This is Milton the Marmalade Hoverfly and he is going to show you a Burdock called Lesser Burdock,Β Arctium minus.

Male Marmalade Hoverfly

Lesser Burdock

Lesser Burdock

4The flowers resemble thistles and that is probably what’s confusing the poor Hoverflies.

Arctium lappa

Arctium lappa

Arctium lappa

Arctium lappa

Arctium lappa

Arctium lappa

In some parts of the world the tap root of Burdock is harvested as a root vegetable and I read that it is popular in Asian cuisine. Here it is used to make Dandelion and Burdock a soft drink Β made from the fermented roots of the plants a bit like Ginger Beer.

It’s other claim to fame is being the inspiration for Velcro. The seed heads, called Burrs, are covered in hooks that attach themselves to passing animals as a means of dispersing the seed. A clever Swiss inventor called George de Mestral saw the potential in this and realised that as annoying as it was to have to get these burrs off his dog you could also use such a system to stick things together and he invented Velcro.

Lesser Burdock

Lesser Burdock

Lesser Burdock

Now I am just going to bring the Hoverflies back to show you one little thing. A couple of weeks ago I posted this next picture and told you that it was a female Hoverfly (eyes wide apart)

Female HoverflyToday’s animal is a male (eyes touching)

Male HoverflyAnd that is how you tell the Hoverfly’s sex. Cool πŸ™‚

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2 thoughts on “Marmalade and Burdock”

  1. Your photos are amazing and I love the way you bring nature to life. And thank you for the pictures of the Musk Mallow earlier this month. I was able to identify one which popped out from under the bay bush in my garden πŸ™‚

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