I am a retired nurse from Bristol. I am married with five grown up children, two grandchildren, a boy and a girl and two cats Heidi and Tilly. I like rambling, history and travel and I am hoping to connect with other people around the world who share my interests. I am especially keen to hear from other older bloggers.
This month my garden is covered in bluebells or wild hyacinths. They fill every spare space and their spreading foliage stops other flowers growing. However I do love the delicate bell shape flowers which carpet the edge of my lawn. Purists would object that they are the Spanish variety of bluebell rather than the more delicate British bluebell which has a thinner arching stem and a stronger perfume.
I have chosen another bright yellow spring time flower for Cee’s flower of the day photo challenge. Cowslips (primula veris) are a relative of the primrose with a similar dark green wrinkled leaf but the small bell shaped flowers grow from a single stalk. In the past the flowers were used to add colour and flavour to wine. Continue reading “Cowslip #FOTD”
I have chosen gorse as my flower of the day after reading that children used to use the flowers to make a dye to decorate Easter eggs in the past. In England scrub land is alive with the bright yellow gorse flowers. It is an evergreen shrub and the sharp needle like leaves make it difficult for animals to eat.
Here it is going to be a very strange Easter with the churches shut and friends and family unable to visit.
I would like to wish you a happy Easter where ever you are.
Oh, to be in England
Now that April’s there,
And whoever wakes in England
Sees, some morning, unaware,
That the lowest boughs and the brushwood sheaf
Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf,
While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough
In England – now!
And after April, when May follows,
And the whitethroat builds, and all the swallows!
Hark, where my blossomed pear-tree in the hedge
Leans to the field and scatters on the clover
Blossoms and dewdrops – at the bent
spray’s edge –
That’s the wise thrush; he sings each song
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture!
And though the fields look rough with hoary dew,
All will be gay when noontide wakes anew
The buttercups, the little children’s dower
– Far brighter than this gaudy melon-flower!
This poem is called Home thoughts from abroad and was written by Robert Browning a Victorian poet who spent much of his life in Italy. At present we are unable to leave the house except for short walks near home and I feel a bit as he must have felt when I think of the beautiful spring countryside all around. Unfortunately the thrush who sings each song twice over is quite rare but we do have blackbirds, robins,finches and rooks come to share our garden and I took this photo of red tulips on my walk this morning. The other photo was taken in April last year on Clevedon seafront.
If you need cheering up can I recommend this family’s version of “One day more” from Les Mis It is true that getting an online Tesco delivery slot has suddenly become the most important activity of the day.
Two or possible Austin minis were covered with old pennies in 1967 and used to promote the Beatles record Penny Lane.
The 1960’s conjure up images of flower power, hippies, mini skirts and the birth of pop music. The iconic car was the Austin mini designed by Alec Issigonis and the Beatles were undoubtedly the biggest group of my teenage years.
In 1967 the John Lennon and Paul McCartney single “Penny Lane” was recorded during the Sergeant Pepper session and released with Strawberry Fields forever as part as a double A side. Penny Fields was the area of Liverpool where the Beatles grew up which was named after an 18th century slave owner James Penny.
The early purple orchid is one of the first orchids to appear each Spring in an English ancient woodland. It has about fifty small flowers which are arranged in a cone shaped cluster on a tall spike. Like many orchids it has a rather unpleasant smell. The leaves are very distinctive with dark blotches which some people think look like dried blood. An old name for the plant was dead men’s fingers. Continue reading “Early purple orchid at Folly farm”
Here in Britain the country is going into full panic mode with the corona virus scare. When I went to the supermarket this morning I noticed a lot of empty shelves. So it is good to know that many of the plants in our woodlands are edible and can be very tasty. A couple of weeks ago I went on a plant foraging walk in our local nature reserve and the leader Steve England introduced us to several plants that were safe to eat or had other uses such as making string or home remedies. Wild garlic is particularly easy to distinguish because of its distinctive pungent smell.
The Royal Horticultural Society holds a series of flower shows through out the year including the world famous Chelsea flower show. The season starts in April with the Cardiff flower show. It is always held in Bute Park next to Cardiff Castle. This year, Corona virus permitting it will take place between the 17th and 20th of April. The early date gives visitors a chance to buy bulbs and other plants for the summer.