Image Credit: Photos of the wildflower meadow at Hiltingbury Recreation Ground taken by me, Allison Symes. Other images created in Book Brush using Pixabay photos.
Am glad to say that, after a late start, the wildflower meadow is back at Hiltingbury Recreation Ground. There is a surfeit of yellow this year. One year the dominant colour was white. I prefer white as a backdrop to show more colourful flowers off with but that’s probably just me.
Now I must admit I’m not the world’s best gardener but I do know what I like when I see it when it comes to flowers. The wildflower meadow here has been a delight and all credit to those who have made this happen so thank you all.
Far Better Late Than Never
I am glad to see the flowers in bloom. I had wondered if the meadow was going to “take” at all this year given the strange weather, and all the rain at odd times, we’ve been experiencing. It is good to be wrong sometimes. The old saying of better late than never is also apt here.
The only thing I don’t like about the meadow is the plastic fence around it. It does seem out of place though I appreciate it is to stop people walking through the meadow and wrecking the flowers. I just wish the fence could be a little more aesthetic.
Things like the wildflower meadow give me a greater appreciation of just how colourful this world is and, as a result of that, what a marvellous piece of “equipment” the eye is to be able to appreciate these things and to decode what we are seeing. I love black and white (and often wear monochrome outfits) but oh how much we would miss out on if there were no other colours.
Giving Back to the Natural World
I hope the wildflower meadow attracts the bees and other pollinators. I haven’t seen many bees around again but planting things like this is the way to try to attract such lovely and useful insects. I have no problems with bees. Wasps are another matter though mainly because they can sting and keep on stinging. (When it comes to classical music I prefer The Flight of the Bumblebee to The Wasp Overture!).
But I would love to see far more of our insects out and about (though I have seen some butterflies).
I am glad there is a greater awareness of the need to plant things like the wildflower meadow and I do see it as a kind of trying to give back to the natural world.
I like the idea of a huge splash of colour in between the dog walkers, the football players, and those making use of the skateboard ramp at Hiltingbury. Amongst our busyness, there should be room for a quiet place where we can take time out to stand and stare at the flowers and other aspects of the natural world.
Wildflowers and the Garden
I was delighted to find this link to the wildflowers of Britain. Ideal for someone like me who can recognise daisies, roses, daffodils etc but would struggle to name a wood anemone or a columbine. (Like the sound of the last one. It flows nicely off the tongue).
I did have one little triumph in my own garden this year in that I had more bluebells come up than ever before. I’d planted some a couple of years ago. Last year I had the odd one come up. This year I had a good half a dozen or so. Naturally I hope for more to emerge next year.
Do you have a favourite wildflower? I’m fond of lily of the valley and have a couple of clumps of these. Mind, I am also fond of the scent when it is bottled by a perfume manufacturer (thanks, Yardley!). For the garden variety, I have to get right down to be able to appreciate the scent but it is worth it.
My other favourite scented plant is my lilac. I have two of these – the purple one’s scent is just heavenly. The white flowered one has a smell which reminds me of the old aniseed balls I used to have as a kid. (Do they still have these sweets now? I remember not having them that often because, while the taste was okay, it was the hardness of the sweet that put me off. Could easily crack teeth on them!).
I must admit my garden and the great outdoors generally has no influence on my writing whatsoever. I know other writers can be inspired by things like that but for me getting out and about and seeing things like the wildflower meadow acts more like a breathing space. That is incredibly useful and beneficial. I go back to my desk if not raring to go, at least in a refreshed state of mind which does help boost creativity.
Has anyone had any success in attracting more bees and other insects into their gardens by planting specific flowers?
I have heard buddleia is wonderful for attracting butterflies but have also heard, because the plant is so successful in doing that, it can then act as a “takeaway” for birds who know where the butterflies are going to be! Hmm… not sure what you do about that kind of thing.
I was once impressed by a robin in my front garden who was flying literally about two feet above the ground, swallowed a cabbage white whole, and then flew off, presumably satisfied. I didn’t know robins could “do” stunt flying like that. I assumed that kind of flying was the preserve of the swifts and the house martins. The unfortunate butterfly had been attracted to my camellia – sadly not for long.
Flowers do have a language of their own, according to the Victorians. I share a link to a listing of some of the meanings here.
I wonder, though, if flowers could speak out loud to us in a way we would understand, what would they tell us? Do you think the wildflowers might have equally wild language given we have not always appreciated the natural world around us? Hmm…. Swearing flowers. Now that is something I could possibly put into a flash fiction story!
Read blog posts by Allison Symes published on Chandler’s Ford Today.
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