Clare took B&J away for the weekend and left me to relax and do what I wanted, so naturally I grabbed my handlens and map and headed out mossing. My target area was western Wentwood in the southern part of central Monmouthshire, where Carboniferous Limestone and Old Red Sandstone meet and the landscape is pleasantly up & down, with narrow lanes and areas of woodland.
I knocked off three blank tetrads (ST48E, 49A and 49D) and brought two others (ST49B & 49I) up to par (>80 spp) following visits to them a few years ago. Bryologically there wasn't much to write home about, just a good cross section of the local flora. Highlights were Tortula marginata on the wall of Penhow Woodlands NNR carpark (3rd VC35 record), a patch of Neckera pumila in Penhow Woodlands NNR (new for ST48), Fissidens exilis on the floor of some recent coppice, Plagiothecium curvifolium on conifer logs, fruiting Brachythecium velutinum on a lane bank, and the calcicoles Anomodon viticulosus, Taxiphyllum wissgrillii and Fissidens gracilifolius in the NNR. I also got unnecessarily excited about some Orthotrichum stramineum with very orange calyptra tips, but its hairy vaginula indicated it wasn't O. pallens.