Early Flowers

Lesser Celandine

Lesser Celandine

Spring is really happening now at the woods, and the buds are bursting and the first wildflowers are emerging.  We have a wonderful display of feral daffodils at the woods.  Some of them are more like wild daffodils, others are all manner of different varieties.  They were planted about 50 years ago, and have naturalised and form a wonderful display in the spring, as well as acting as a source of nectar for the early insects.

Daffodils

Daffodils

Daffodil

Daffodil backlit by the evening sun

We have always had one patch of cowslips at the woods.  Last year we noticed that a few had spread to other areas in the main clearing, which was good news.  This year we have noticed at least 12 self-seeded plants in Betty’s Wood as well – about half a mile from the original clump – near the ponds in the damp and clay soil.  It is really exciting to see these spreading.

Cowslip

One of the cowslips in Betty’s Wood

There are wild primrose growing in our orchard, and they are also spreading – in fact they may meet the cowslip and produce the oxlip hybrids, but this hasn’t happened yet.  They catch the evening light in an amazingly beautiful way.

Primrose

Primrose

Yellow is also the colour of the lesser celandine, a plant of the shade, which is growing and spreading on our paths and under the elder scrub.  This has just started to flower and I have managed to capture it in both colour and black and white – which I think looks more spectacular (photo at the top of this post)

Lesser Celandine

Lesser Celandine

Finally, we have the blue speedwell coming into flower in our meadows.  Such a wonderful and delicate flower, and so difficult to photograph – it is very tiny, and very delicate so it moves in the slightest breeze, and is very easy to over-expose the image too.

Speedwell

Speedwell

The trees, too, are starting to flower – we have the first buds on the wild cherry and crab apple that we planted in Betty’s Wood in 2011, but which haven’t flowered until now.  There are also buds on our domestic apples in our orchard, and on the rowan trees. The woods are truly coming to life!

Cherry Blossom Buds

Cherry Blossom Buds

Bud burst on Rowan

Bud burst on Rowan – leaves and flowers

Crocus

Crocus by the roadside

Aliens and Dragons

The stunning, beautiful, complicated and undeniably alien forms that nature can take really intrigue me.   Here are a few from yesterday.

Common Darter Dragonfly

Common Darter Dragonfly

Alien bracken frond

Bracken frond
Fractal bracken frond