Thursday, 10 May 2012

Reality check

I like to put descriptions of plants and the countryside into my work (such as it is at this stage!).  And you find yourself tapping away at a keyboard in coldest December trying to describe a sunny June and you think - hang on a minute, are there roses flowering in June or do they come later?

A few years ago I got a diary which was not specific to a year but had a page a day and I started to make notes of when I spotted bits of wildlife and flowers.  I hoped to be able to use it as a reference, so that I could think, 'hmm, this scene is in May, are the hydrangeas out?'  I made a few entries, then lost the thing. 

However, after a selection of some of the oddest weather that I can remember, where the plants must be absolutely driven made by the inconsistent weather, I have decided just to go by the textbook entries and Wikipedia.  We have just had a May bank holiday which was colder than the preceding Christmas Day!  We have drought orders and flood warnings at the same time in some places.  At the end of March we were in a heatwave, warmer than average June temperatures and all the flowers shot up.  The honeysuckle in our garden started with flower buds.  After all the cold wind and rain (and snow not so far away!) all the flower buds are gone. 

Currently the wild garlic that has been flowering a good few weeks early along the local brook is under water after all the unseasonal rain.  I hope the plants survive, they always look so cheerful at this time of year.  And I shall be careful with my plant descriptions. 

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