Listening to Pam Ayres this morning on Saturday Live ( radio 4) sadly bemoaning the fact that country fields no longer have the huge variety of spring flowers they used to have when she was young; 60 years on and here in France, I realise how lucky I am that I can still have that same experience as some of the landscape remains unscathed here.
So vivid was her account of the abundance of wild flowers and grasses that she could have been describing our fields here where I walk every day. I’ve mowed a path that winds gently through the field so that I can enjoy wading through the grasses, clovers, campion, vetch, buttercups, marguerites, orchids, sorrels which reach almost as tall as me, and countless others plants I can’t put a name to. I particularly noted cuckoo-spit yesterday which she mentioned as well.
2 weeks ago:
Today it’s grown twice as high:
There’s just one difference though, which we don’t get in the UK, and that is the orchestra of cicadas which accompanies the bucolic scene, their oscillating chirrups complete the picture of a warm Spring day.
Of course, our field isn’t left entirely to itself because Graham cuts it twice a year. Like the French farmers and local communes who manage the road verges, he waits until the field has flowered before cutting, thereby ensuring a crop of wild flowers whilst preventing the brambles from taking over.
Full of the joys of Spring, rolling around where the wild boar have been rooting…..
and lastly this delicate wee fellow here found on the window last week, a newly hatched praying mantis: