4.1 Plant Macrofossils

by Wendy Carruthers, Archaeobotanist *

4.1.1 Sampling and sieving methodology

Large numbers of soil samples were taken for the recovery of plant macrofossils and other environmental and economic remains during the six seasons of excavation at West Heslerton. For large features and deposits such as the Grubenhäuser, the sample locations were either individually three-dimensionally recorded and referenced using a six figure 'Tag number' or taken as blocks from the baulks and given 'Block numbers'. The locations of these were recorded as overlays to the section drawings, from which data-accurate 3D co-ordinates can be calculated. Further samples were taken from small features such as post-holes and pits. A decision was taken early in the project to focus the flotation programme on the Grubenhäuser. owing to their ubiquitous presence in the context of sites of this period and the still minimal degree of understanding. Their distribution across the site and well-sealed contents make them well suited for the source of comparative material which offers the potential to look at broader issues such as the varying burial environment (see also 3.6.2 The Grubenhäuser).

Most of the samples were floated on site, using a 500 micron mesh to recover the flot and 1mm. mesh to retain the residue in the floatation tank, The flots were slowly dried and bagged. In some cases residues were also retained as, during a site visit, the author observed mineralised remains in some of the processed samples. Samples from waterlogged deposits were generally not processed on site, but were bagged wet and retained for laboratory processing at a later date.

4.1.2 Assessment methods Flotation samples

Because there were such a large number of samples, a sub-sample was selected 'semi-randomly' for scanning for this assessment. The selection was done by firstly separating the samples into their site areas, and then picking out a number of samples from each area for scanning. Since there were so many flots to select from, it was not possible to open every bag or examine them through the microscope in order to select samples for the assessment. By looking through the transparent plastic of the bags, samples with large numbers of grains could usually be picked out, but large quantities of chaff or small weed seeds are not likely to have been spotted with the naked eye. It cannot be stated, therefore, that this selection was truly representative of the material present on the site, but because c.5% of the total number of samples was examined in the assessment it is hoped that the results will provide a general impression of the range of material present. Contingency time must be added, therefore, when calculating the time necessary for the full analysis, in case exceptional samples are encountered that require more detailed work.

The flots selected for assessment were dry-sieved through 2mm, 1mm and 500 micron meshed sieves in order to separate off the larger charcoal fragments and make sorting easier. The different fractions were then scanned under the microscope. Where plant remains were picked out, they were put into glass tubes but left inside the flot bags. The larger charcoal fragments (>2mm) were bagged separately and sent to Isabel Figueiral for assessment (see 4.2 Charcoal Assessment). Flotation residues

Because of time restrictions, it has not been possible to examine many of the residues that were retained from the flotation samples. However, it is clear that mineralised plant remains will be present in some sample residues, as 27% of the flots examined in the assessment contained small amounts of mineralised material. Since the majority of mineralised remains are too dense to be recovered in flots, even more material is to be expected when the residues are examined. The highest quantities of fragments were found in flots from Areas 11AB and 11BC, but it remains to be seen whether this will be the case when the residues are examined. Sub-samples of 300ml were examined from the few residues included in this assessment. They were dry-sieved in a graded stack of sieves and rapidly scanned at c. x10 magnification. No mineralised plant remains were observed. Waterlogged samples

Very few waterlogged contexts were excavated, although one or two were subjected to flotation accidentally. As the assessment of waterlogged samples is very time-consuming, only one unprocessed soil sample was examined in order to determine the state of preservation and potential. A 500ml sub-sample was stack sieved down to 250 microns and the residues were scanned in water. Plant remains picked out were stored in 75% alcohol, but very numerous taxa were simply quantified in a scale of abundance. Residues were discarded after the assessment.

Two other samples that had been floated were quicker to assess, as they could be rapidly scanned under the microscope. They contained a useful range of taxa despite having been dried out. Plant remains that were picked out were rehydrated in 75% alcohol.

4.1.3 Assessment of the quantity and quality of the plant assemblage Quantity

Flotation samples

Figures for the total number of flotation samples given at the base of Figure 44 are taken from the flot data table (Total = 2,948), but samples have been omitted where no soil volumes were recorded. The absence of sample volumes reduces the amount of information that can be recovered, but it is possible that in some exceptional cases it may be worthwhile examining some of these samples. The unquantified samples amount to a total of 361 for all of the site areas, but most are from 2DA, 2DB and 2DD.

For each sample scanned for the assessment the plant remains were roughly quantified using a scale of abundance (1=1 to 20; 2=21 to 75; 3=76 to 150; 4=151 plus; NB. numbers are approximate only). This information was used to characterise the assemblages and to calculate rough frequencies for Table 4.1. Sample by sample information is not given in this report but is retained in the archive.

The quantities of charred material varied greatly but were generally found to be fairly consistent within particular areas of the site. This point is discussed more fully in relation to the research questions, and further information on the quantities of the different components is given in section

Fragments of charred plant material other than seeds were present in varying quantities and these are described more fully in section


The total number of sample residues retained is 157 from 51 contexts. Because the possibility of mineralisation was only discovered late in the excavation programme, residues have only been retained from Areas 11AD, 11BA, 11BC, 11BD, 11BF, 11CD and 11CE. Unfortunately, Area 11AB, the area producing the widest range of mineralised remains, including a possible cess deposit, did not have the residues retained. So far no mineralised plant remains have been recovered from the 6 residue sub-samples scanned, but quantities of mineralised remains in the flots were generally low when present.

Possible waterlogged samples

The number of unsieved soil samples available for full analysis is 29, although from rapid inspection of the samples mostly appear to be lacking in preserved organic material. As stated in, only one whole earth sample was assessed. The total number of waterlogged plant remains in this sample was high, and the species diversity large. Provenance

The presence of modern rootlets and frequent modern seeds, particularly Chenopodiaceae, indicated that contamination could have occurred on this site. However, modern charred cereals appear to be easily differentiated from ancient ones because of the difference in state of preservation, and no modern-looking charred remains or uncharred cereals were recorded. It is, therefore, not likely that contamination is a problem on this site, and differences between the modern and charred ancient weed floras bear this out. The artefact record also supports this suggestion.

Residuality is likely to be a very minor problem in some parts of the site. One or two spelt glume bases were found in areas of known Roman activity but because this appears to be restricted to a few areas (figure ##) , it is unlikely to cause difficulties when trying to determine whether or not spelt continued in cultivation into the Anglo-Saxon period. However, it will be important to take into account the artefact record when analysing the plant remains.

Because of the nature of Anglo-Saxon settlement, sites of this period that are not affected by residuality and contamination are relatively rare. This makes West Heslerton of great importance. It is hoped that further analysis of the artefacts at the analysis stage will provide phasing information for the site, which will enable a more detailed examination of changes over time to be made. Radiocarbon dates may also be of value, including dates on seed samples where they are of major significance (see also 3.3.2 Residuality and Radiocarbon). Character

Flotation Samples

Most of the remains were cereal grains, but in some cases weed seeds were quite frequent. No samples were found to contain large quantities of chaff fragments, but this does not rule out the possibility of finding such a sample in the full analysis stage, as indicated in section The significance of the different components of cereal remains is discussed more fully in section 4.1.4.

A fairly wide range of weed taxa was observed, including such typical arable weeds as corn cockle (Agrostemma githago) and corn spurrey (Spergula arvensis). The latter is of interest in indicating the cultivation of acidic soils in a predominantly calcareous area. The occurrence of indicator weeds of this type will provide an important insight into the likely areas under cultivation. Further crop plants represented include peas, beans and flax, the latter being preserved by charring and waterlogging. The presence of a number of small vetch seeds will be useful for further study, as the cultivation of vetches for fodder seems to have commenced around this period.

Additional charred remains include hazel nut shell fragments, which were present in small quantities; tuberous or rhizomatous plant fragments, which were fairly frequent in some samples; and material described as 'bread-type' fragments. The latter two categories will require further analysis before their significance can be determined (see 4.1.4). Leaves and fruits of Ericaceae (heaths and heathers) shrubs were found in some samples, and the presence of twisted charred twigs indicated that ericaceous charcoal was also present. This is also discussed further in section 4.1.4.


The state of preservation of the charred cereals varied from being very good in some cases, with no distortion or loss of surface characters, to being very vacuolated and eroded in other samples. It is possible that redeposition of burnt crop processing waste and post-depositional erosion may have caused a reduction in the proportions of chaff present in the samples, as very few adjoined segments of rachis were recovered and any fragments were only recognisable due to the prominent bulges visible on the very small fragments of rachis nodes of barley that were recovered. This factor will need to be taken into account at the analysis stage, in case it has biased the recovery towards this taxon. In general, the state of preservation of the charred assemblages was similar to, if not better than, the few other early medieval and medieval rural sites that have been examined to date. For this reason West Heslerton, because it has been so well sampled, is likely to be of great value in tackling the problems of taphonomy on these other sites. This point is discussed in more detail in below.

The mineralised plant remains recovered from the flots were typical of calcium phosphate-replaced plant material, as described in Green (1979) and Carruthers (forthcoming). It is uncertain at present whether any concentrations of this material will be found on the site, i.e. faecal deposits or middens, or whether the material has been redeposited around the site and will be found only in small quantities. The potential of this material to provide information on diet not often preserved by charring has already been demonstrated by the recovery of mineralised Prunus sp. (sloe, cherry etc.) stone fragments.

The single unprocessed waterlogged sample that was examined contained a wide range of taxa, including relatively delicate seeds such as flax. It appears to have remained waterlogged since deposition and any further samples of this nature are likely to be of great value in adding to the knowledge of food plants, fibre plants, hay meadow management etc., and the general environment around the site.

4.1.4 Assessment of the potential for analysis

A number of research aims were outlined in a personal communication to the excavator, Dominic Powlesland, after an initial visit to the site and discussions with other specialists (letter dated 12.5.92). These are discussed below in the light of the assessment of c.5% of the samples from West Heslerton. It should be noted that this is a relatively small and possibly unrepresentative proportion of the total number of samples available for study, and there are likely to be new research questions arising once the full analysis is underway and site phasing has been carried out.

4.1.5 Agricultural economy

(see also 7.2.1 Environment and economy). Crop plants present and specific uses

Although a basic range of major crop plants has been obtained for the site (barley, wheat, oats, rye, peas, beans, flax), more precise details of exactly which wheats were cultivated and which crops were used primarily for fodder rather than for human consumption must await the full analysis. Because only small amounts of chaff have been recovered so far, it is uncertain whether both tetraploid and hexaploid wheats were grown, or whether two-row barley was present. The examination of a much greater number of samples followed by statistical analysis of the assemblages for the different areas and context types should provide details of the relative importance of each crop and their possible uses.

It appears at present that barley was the major cereal, rather than wheat, and this is of interest in showing similarities with sites in Continental Europe. However, further evidence is needed to ensure that this is not just an artefact of the mode of preservation, since free-threshing cereals like bread-type wheat are less likely to become charred than barley because of differences in the methods of processing the crops. Again, statistical analyses of a larger body of data should provide the answer, particularly with regard to the distribution in the living areas in comparison with occurrences in storage and livestock-rearing areas.

The range of other crop plants may be extended by examining further samples. At present vetch seeds have been found in some areas of the site, but it is uncertain whether these represent cultivated vetches or weeds. More detailed examination and measurements may help to solve this problem, as may further study of the distribution of the remains around the site.

Very little evidence of germinated grain was found beyond that associated with a malt kiln, material currently being examined by Steve Mrozowski, although it is possible that samples from a specific area may have been missed in the assessment. Clearly, this will be resolved once more detailed work is undertaken. Methods of cultivation and range of soils tilled

The range of possible arable weeds is of interest in indicating the cultivation primarily of local light, base-rich soils, but further work needs to be done to separate the taxa that may have come from different sources. Seeds of the sedge family (Carex spp.), for example, are the most numerous and widespread taxon found on the site, and this is very unusual. These may represent the cultivation of damp soils, or roofing or flooring materials rather than arable weeds, since fragments of charred rhizomatous material are also frequent. Further work on identification of these remains and their precise distribution may provide the answer. This is an important area of research, since surprisingly little clear evidence has been recovered from any period for plant materials used for building. It would also be of interest to be able to establish the source of the materials in order to determine the range of habitats that were being exploited.

It has been suggested that certain weeds are strongly associated with particular crops, for example field penny-cress (Thlaspi arvense) is said to be typically a weed of flax (Godwin 1975). Because the number of samples at West Heslerton is so large, this type of relationship may be examined further and this will help the interpretation of smaller assemblages on other sites.

Because quite a wide range of weed taxa has been recovered in association with the charred cereals it is possible that more detailed analysis in conjunction with closer phasing information might reveal changes in the weed flora over time. Such information may point to changes in cultivation methods, e.g. the introduction of vetches in a crop rotation system. From the small amount of information recovered from the assessment the full potential of the weed taxa data cannot be determined, but this site presents a rare opportunity to study such topics due to the large database available. Methods of crop processing

Because of the scarcity of chaff fragments it appears that the major crop processing activities either took place in an area not yet examined in the assessment, or probably did not involve the burning of the heavy fraction of crop processing waste. This absence of heavy waste seems to be typical of sites of this nature, and it may well be because such material was valued for animal fodder and tempering material.

Arable weed seeds were present in relatively high numbers, however, and it is of particular interest that there appear to be differences in the distribution of large, heavy, weed seeds such as corn cockle and black bindweed, and small, lighter, seeds such as Primulaceae and Potentilla type. Further studies should reveal whether this is a statistically significant difference and so may indicate whether this reflects different stages in processing occurring in different areas of the site. If such a difference can be shown, this could have important taphonomic implications. Since chaff is rare in both areas, it may be necessary in future to adjust methods of identifying crop processing activities and concentrate on weed floras for sites containing primarily free-threshing cereals. The arable/pastoral balance

Although difficult to answer, this question may be examined by looking at the archaeobotanical and archaeozoological data together and by seeing how much evidence there is for fodder crops and hay. Pollen samples taken from waterlogged deposits may also be of value in answering this question. 0ther plant foods

The examination of waterlogged and mineralised assemblages is important in order to recover evidence of cultivated and wild fruits, nuts, herbs and spices, since these remains are less likely to become charred. Charred hazel nut shell does seem to be fairly common around the site, and a study of the pattern of distribution may reveal information about activity areas. A few edible plant remains were found amongst the mineralised material, in particular probable Prunus (sloe/cherry/plum etc.) stones, and it is likely that further evidence will be revealed if the residues from more concentrated deposits that may have contained faecal waste have been retained. Activity areas

It is encouraging that having simply scanned only 5% of the samples, a number of differences have been observed between the various areas of the site. Some of these have been referred to in previous sections, i.e. in cereal and seed concentrations and in weed seed sizes. Although indistinct at this stage due to the patchy nature of the assessment data, there is some suggestion that the frequencies of different cereal types vary, e.g. wheat may be slightly more frequent in Areas 2CB and 2CC than in the southern areas. All of these patterns of distribution will contribute towards an understanding of what was occurring in each area, providing that sufficient numbers of samples are examined to ensure that the differences are seen to be statistically significant. State of preservation will also be taken into account, as variations in soil types may have caused taphonomic differences.

The results obtained by Steve Mrozowski, who is looking in detail at the distribution of plant remains within a small number of Grubenhäuser, will be of value in understanding what the Grubenhäuser were used for and how the deposits were formed. It is hoped that these results will be obtained early enough to take them into account when selecting samples for further study.

An attempt was made to see whether different context types (grub fills, pits, fire pits, ditches etc.) contained different types of assemblage, taking into account that the number of assessment samples examined was low. These very preliminary results suggest that there is a wide variation in content of the Grubenhäuser, although further analysis may reveal some pattern, e.g. legumes seem to be present only in grubs in some areas of the site, and this may relate to storage areas. Similarly, pits were found to be very variable, and it is likely that a much larger number of features of each type will need to be examined before any pattern of use is observed. The only consistent result was the recovery of large amounts of charcoal from the fire pits, as would be expected. The additional presence of ericaceous remains and sedges, and in one case large numbers of dock seeds, may provide useful information as to materials used for fuel (see also 3.6.4 Layout of the settlement, property boundaries and enclosures, 3.6.5 Spatial patterning and midden deposits and Exploring the morphology, evidence for planning and spatial development of the site). Site formation processes

As yet very few chaff fragments have been recovered from the assessment samples and no samples appeared to contain concentrated burnt crop processing waste. However, this is typical of sites of early medieval and medieval periods, contrasting with sites of the preceding Roman and Iron Age periods. This may be due to a combination of factors, the principal of which is the cultivation of free-threshing rather than hulled wheats in the later periods. Free-threshing cereals are more likely to have been fully processed prior to storage so that chaff fragments would be rare in domestic areas of settlement sites. Since all of the chaff would have been removed in the threshing area, it is more likely to have been collected for use as fodder, temper, etc. rather than burned piecemeal on household fires. For this reason it may be necessary to examine weed assemblages in more detail in order to recover processing information since, when waste is burned, they may survive charring more frequently.

The weed distribution data from West Heslerton may be useful in helping archaeobotanists to interpret the apparently uniform assemblages found in most early medieval and medieval rural sites, where little chaff is found to indicate deposits of crop processing waste. This is of great importance because it is these sites that have the potential to provide us with information about cultivation practices, but until we understand the taphonomic processes we cannot attempt to interpret the data (see also Exploring the morphology, evidence for planning and spatial development of the site). Status

Once a greater quantity of data is available it may be possible to determine whether some areas of the site were consuming larger quantities of possible 'higher status' goods, such as bread-type wheat. Because it was only possible to take a few waterlogged and mineralised samples, evidence for imported goods such as exotic fruits will have to be examined on a whole-site basis (see also Is there any evidence that allows us to distinguish between 'Native' and 'Saxon'?). Change through time

Because full phasing information has still to been assembled, it is not yet possible to determine whether this area of study will be important for the site. The range of crop plants so far recovered is typical of most Anglo-Saxon and medieval sites, with little indication that cereals such as spelt wheat continued in cultivation after the Roman period. However, this sort of question will be more easily answered once a large body of data has been assembled and more detailed identifications have been made. Waterlogged and mineralised deposits will be important in determining whether supplies of exotic fruits, herbs and spices were still available, and whether orchard cultivation was taking place (see also To explore the transition from Roman to Saxon and that from Early to Middle Saxon, both periods of large-scale settlement shift and re-organisation, in the context of larger re-organisation of the landscape). Trade

This aspect of the economy may be investigated once all of the data have been recovered, and in conjunction with animal bone and artefact studies. Comparisons with other rural sites such as Flixborough and larger urban centres such as York will be of interest. Comparison with other sites across Great Britain and continental Europe

Previous investigations into rural early medieval and medieval sites have been rare, and it is these sites that contain the evidence of agricultural practices rather than urban sites. Although sites such as Eckweek (Carruthers 1995) and West Cotton, Raunds (Gill Campbell, pers.comm.) may have produced better preserved charred remains, they have only begun to answer many of the questions of crop husbandry methods, and at Eckweek at least the sampling was not extensive enough. The sampling at West Heslerton is particularly useful in examining these sorts of questions because it is only where many duplicates from the same context type and phase are examined that we can be certain that the differences observed are statistically valid. So many biases are operating on archaeobotanical material, particularly charred remains, that duplication is essential in order to understand the variation.

Other sites in the locality that will provide useful comparisons include Wharram Percy and Thwing. The author has just completed work on a small number of Anglo-Saxon samples from Thwing (1993) and obtained results very similar to those at West Heslerton, i.e. primarily barley with some similar weeds, large legumes and ericaceous remains. The Wharram Percy Anglo-Saxon material is due to be assessed shortly, but from preliminary observations there also appears to be large quantities of barley, large legumes and flax, with possibly more bread-type wheat. Together these sites will provide an important insight into Anglo-Saxon settlement in the Yorkshire Wolds.

It is already clear that barley was a major crop at West Heslerton, and this may reflect the continental origins of the occupants. Further comparisons will need to be made, for example in seeing whether the weed floras are similar, and information from other ecofacts and artefacts will be valuable (see also To compare and contrast West Heslerton with national and continental examples to identify and test models of morphology and sequence). Fuel resources

Most of this information will be obtained from the charcoal analysis undertaken by Isabel Figueiral. However, fragments of charred and waterlogged heather (Calluna vulgaris) stems and fruits are fairly widespread, and these may represent fuel for industrial purposes, or thatching and bedding material. As the nearest source of heather is some distance from the site, the reason behind this deliberate gathering is of interest. It may be because of the high temperature obtained by burning ericaceous wood, so a study of the association of these remains with artefacts such as slag may be informative (see also 4.2 Charcoal Assessment). Associated data

As mentioned in earlier sections, the results from other specialists will be of particular importance in examining activity areas and site status. The animal bone analysis may help when looking at the balance between arable and pastoral agriculture, and the disposal patterns of bone will be an important factor in examining waste disposal in general. Any pollen studies, either on-site or off, would be of considerable value in looking at the overall land-use pattern and changes over the period of occupation. Soil reports which provide information about the formation of deposits from which plant macrofossils have been extracted should be of value. It is possible that the few waterlogged samples that contain well-preserved plant remains will produce large enough insect assemblages to be useful. The analysis of these remains will help to understand how the deposits formed and what the local conditions were like (see also 4.2 Charcoal Assessment and 4.3 Faunal Remains Assessment). Storage and curation

The processed flots are currently sufficiently well bagged and boxed to provide no storage problems, and the sorted tubes of charred seeds will take up very little space following the analysis. The dry residues are currently in store in Nottingham with the whole soil samples (possible waterlogged samples). Most of the latter, however, are not in watertight bags, but are loosely tied in fertiliser sacks. These will not remain sufficiently wet for a long period, and they should be re-bagged as soon as possible.

Sorted mineralised remains present no storage problems but waterlogged plant macrofossils can dry out if storage jars/tubes are not well-sealed. Since there will only be a few of these samples, the jars can be double sealed inside a box containing water to prevent evaporation.

4.1.6 Conclusions

The main strengths of this site are the rarity of sites of this type and period, i.e. rural Anglo-Saxon, and the extremely thorough nature of the sampling programme. It is due to the availability of large numbers of well-recorded samples that a whole range of research questions can be asked, rather than the character of the remains themselves. However, it is also important that the remains do seem to be typical of rural early and later medieval sites, since the answers recovered from West Heslerton will greatly assist in the interpretation of other sites, which have proved to be relatively unproductive to date.

It is, therefore, strongly recommended that a large proportion of the samples are examined in order to recover sufficient data to be analysed using statistical programmes. Since large amounts of time and money have so far been spent recording and processing the samples to a high level of accuracy, the opportunity should be taken to make the best use of this unique resource.

4.1.7 Updated assessment in the light of the 1995 excavations

Excavations in 1995 produced further well-preserved evidence of Saxon occupation and extensive Roman buildings which were religious in character. It is proposed to examine a total of 100 environmental samples from this site in order to strengthen the following lines of archaeobotanical evidence outlined above (Powlesland et al. November 1994): Roman/Saxon transition

The previously excavated area did not produce sufficient samples from the Roman period to examine this aspect of the site in detail. This theme touches most of the other research themes outlined in the Assessment Document, e.g. crop plant usage, husbandry methods, crop processing methods, the importation of food plants etc. This particular period of transition is especially interesting from an archaeobotanical viewpoint, as it includes changes from the cultivation of primarily hulled wheats (principally spelt) to free-threshing wheats (bread-type but also possibly rivet-type), in addition to considerable changes in the availability of luxury fruits and spices etc. This transition is probably the least understood in terms of why the principal cereal crop changed, and how rapidly this took place, and in terms of whether the absence of luxury foods affected all sections of the population, or whether certain orchard fruits etc. continued to be grown in some areas. Charred plant remain evidence should provide data concerning cereal cultivation, and may help in answering the second question if taken together with the charcoal evidence (see also 2.6 The Excavations, 7.1.3 Transitional and To explore the transition from Roman to Saxon and that from Early to Middle Saxon, both periods of large-scale settlement shift and re-organisation, in the context of larger re-organisation of the landscape). Ritual association

The possible ritual nature of the 1995 site provides an extra dimension to the archaeobotanical studies regarding the use of plant foods for religious purposes. This is also a poorly understood subject, for which there has been, as yet, little evidence produced (see AM Lab report by Carruthers No. 65/92, Wanborough Green Lane). Well-preserved cereals (spelt and barley) were observed close to the Roman ?shrine during the site visit, so the information potential from at least some of these samples appears to be good (see also Examine and interpret the basic components of the Roman 'Ritual' landscape). Mineralised plant remains

The opportunity to revise the sample processing methodology slightly so as to increase the chances of recovering mineralised plant remains is very valuable, since this method of preservation usually provides information concerning food plants, particularly exotic imports such as grapes, figs etc.

Numbers given for each category of charred remains (e.g. 'CEREALS') are frequencies on a scale of 1 to 4, rare to numerous, averaged from all of the samples examined in each area. Numbers given against each taxon (e.g. 'barley') are the percentage of samples in which the taxon was recorded: w = worm cocoons only

SITE 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
CEREALS 0.7 2.5 1 1.8 1.4 2.1 2.6 3 1 1.3 1 1 1.2 1.5 1.4 1.8
Barley 73 94 67 82 80 92 100 100   50 65 81 80 100 92 100
Wheat 9 18   64 20 15 93 80     10 14 40     21
Rye   82   27     64 100               7
Oats 9 76   45     71.5 100   25 5 5   50 8 14
WEEDS 1 1.6 0.5 1.8 0.8 1.4 1.9 2.2 1 0.8 0.6 0.9 1.2 1.5 1.1 1.8
Cyperac. 45 70 50 55 40 54 79 80 100 25 20 33 60 100 50 93
Rumex 36 18   27 40 38 22     25 10 19     8 7
Chenopodium 9 18         14 60     10 10       7
Urtica 27                   5 5     8  
Brass. 18 41 17 27   8 43 80     5 19     8  
Dantdonia           15 22       10 19 20   33 14
Agrostem.   18         14 40                
Gallium   18                 5          
Fallopia   6   9     43 20             8  
Plantago 9 6       8 14       5 5     8 29
Small Gram.   6   27   8 29 40       10 20   8 14
No. Otder Taxa   6   8   4 2 5       1 2     2
CHAFF 0 0.6 0 0.6 0 0.2 0.5 0.8 0 0 0.2 0.1 0.2 0 0.1 0.1
LEGUMES 0.5 0.2 0 0.2 0 0 0.7 1.6 0 0 0.5 0 0 0.5 0.3 0.3
Small Vetch 36 24   18     36 50     5         21
Pea             28 60             8 7
Bean             14 20           50 17  
OTHER 0.5 0.2 0.3 1 0.6 0.8 0.7 1.2 3 0.3 0.6 0.3 1.2 1.5 1.5 1.1
Hazelnut     17 27 40   0 20     10 5 20   25 14
Tubers 27   33 36   31 50 20   25 35 14 60 100 58 79
Ericac. 18     9   8 22   100   5 5     42  
Bread-t 9 12   36 20 15 29 40   25 20 5 20 50    
Flax   12           20             cf. 8  
Fungal scl.       18                        
MINERALISED 0 0.7 0 0.2 0 0.5 0.4 0.2 0 0 0.2 0.3 0.2 0.5 0 0.1
No. of taxa   8   2   7 6 2     3 4 W 1   W
CHARCOAL 1.5 1.2 1.2 1.6 2 2.1 1.9 1.4 3 1.3 1.3 1.1 1.8 1.5 1.1 1.1
Samples Scanned 11 17 6 11 5 13 14 5 1 4 20 21 5 2 12 14
No. Contexts 7 16 2 10 3 8 12 4 1 4 6 7 4 2 4 2
Total Samples 512 21 60 119 6 225 94 9 3 964 632 108 60 17 116 2
Table 4.1 Summarised results from plant macrofossil assessment samples


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