Wildflowers

I like all types of flowers, but there’s something really special about flowers growing by themselves without any help from us. That’s why I picked dandelions as my header image. Perhaps you call them  weeds but I think they’re a bit wonderful. Plus bees love them, they are often their source of pollen in early Spring. So stop and think before you get busy with that weedkiller or you’ll poison the bees. And didn’t you play the  dandelion clock game as a kid?

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not a bee but a Peacock butterfly on this one

Dandelions need to get themselves some hints from the bluebells, everyone seems to love the bluebells, and I do too. They are even protected perhaps that’s because of their link to the fairies so take care next time you’re in a bluebell wood.

wild bluebells from our walk this morning

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and our home attempt at a bluebell wood

Actually the bluebells have been spectacular this year, or it could be they put on the same show every year but I’m usually too busy to take enough notice?

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“I mean they’re alright I s’pose, not as nice as me tho'”

Lockdown has meant more time to spend in the garden, but I’m not a very good gardener. Also our garden is a restaurant for rabbits, deer and pheasants. The latter are definitely more abundant this year as no one is shooting them, and a few years back a rabbit actually nested in MrS’s newly built vegetable raised bed! But I’m getting away from my subject. They’d be buzzing in on me in “Just a Minute”

So back to the wildflowers, I’ve always wanted a wildflower meadow and have sown packets and packets of seeds over the years trying to grow one of those beautiful cornflower and poppy filled carpets.

With very little success.

I’ve come to realise two things. First growing one of those meadows is very hard work, you can’t just sprinkle on the seeds and hope for the best. You have to get rid of the grass first, yellow rattle  can help with that. Then you have to sow the seeds and wait, and wait, and wait. I sowed a tiny bed last year and I think it maybe might produce some flowers this year. Plug plants deliver results more quickly and I’d thought about planting some but then read “…rabbits love plug plants..” Pfft! Time to think again. Which brings me to my second realisation. Those cornflowers I like so much aren’t actually native around here, though as a clever naturalist friend pointed out when was “year zero” for native species?  Five hundred years? A thousand ? Something to think about.  So I have to learn to love the flowers which are native and encourage them. Which we do by limiting mowing and careful strimming of the longest grasses.

We’re going to mark out a patch for No Mow May and see what grows, and what wildlife is attracted. I ‘m hoping that means lots of butterflies and bees and not a hoard of very well fed bunnies. And hopefully lots of use for this

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birthday present from MrS

And I’ll leave you with a couple more from our walk today

Until tomorrow

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