Spring was here!

Three weeks ago – 29 March 2023
15 degrees, hike break – 22 April 2023
5 degrees, 24 April 2023

Last week it was getting warmer and warmer, the snow vanished completely the week before and buds started showing on the trees. We noticed that the weather forecast was not going to be quite so good this week and it also threatened slush tomorrow!

Chewed Bramley tree. The top buds are fine!

Last week I raked the rubbish off the front garden from the snow ploughs and saw that quite quickly the grass turned from brown to green. Flowers started poking their heads up from the grass and I am keeping my fingers crossed about the survival of some things we planted last year.

The deer made quite a feast of a few plants and last year was obviously a very good breeding year as we have had steady traffic from foraging young and old . The Bramley apple tree I managed to find and plant last year has had a thrashing, as have one or two of the fruit bushes. They love the green stems of the Bilberry and they are chopped back quite well! But they also love the tips of the tulips that they polish off in one foul swoop.

The badger is a regular visitor again and cleans up under our bird feeders.

Badger tracks to my daughter’s storage box.

My daughter has a storage box on her terrace, where she keeps the peanuts for her birds. It was very obvious when the badger woke up from hibernation as the track to and into the storage box started again. He/she gets into the box to eat in comfort!

I think everyone understands that I love this beautiful country, but the sun doesn’t shine all the time and I felt I owed some less than glamorous pictures😏.

But now, a few beautiful pictures from our 11k walk on Saturday, on a peninsula not too far away. We walked along tracks in the woods, climbed over rocks, sank into sand along the sea edge and climbed up to a viewpoint where apparently a lot of ships came unstuck.

My favourite flower is Hepatica nobilis, which has apparently changed Genus and is now called Anemone hepatica. That makes it easier to describe when comparing it to Anemone nemerosa.

The blue flower in Norwegian is called Blåveis (Liverwort in English) and the white one is called Hvitveis (Wood anemone in English). They often grow in similar areas although the Blåveis prefers chalk areas and deciduous woods. It is found in Eastern Norway where it is more likely to get a covering of snow during the winter. The Hvitveis is found in woody areas almost everywhere in Northern Europe, although not further north than Lofoten in Norway.

The first sign of the Liverwort is when the furry bud peeks up through the leaf litter. The liver-shaped leaves follow, although leaves remain on the plant throughout the winter. Note the different blues with the white stamens like star bursts.

The Wood Anemone leaves appear first with the flower bud on the stem. The backs of the petals can often be pinkish and the stamens are yellow.

We had an absolutely lovely walk and got back home tired and exhausted, but happy.

Now it’s pouring with rain; at least it isn’t snow, but I do have my woollies back on again. My picture for the RHS exhibition are packed and ready to go and the tape from the removals company came in very useful.

Blåveis - Liverwort - Hepatica nobilis. Watercolour on hot pressed paper.
Blåveis – Liverwort – Hepatica nobilis. Watercolour on hot pressed paper

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