After going for numerous rambles and walks over the marshes this Summer, I am now pleased to say I can happily identify at least 15 varieties of wild flower growing on the marshes near my home….some I’ve known since I was knee high to a grass hopper (I can’t remember a time when I didn’t know what a forget-me-not was…..but being able to spot water mint and apple mint, red shank and sneezewort has all been learnt this Summer…. favourites include ragged robin, it’s petals are like tiny torn remnants of fabric, apple mint and water mint smell so lovely and clean…..rose bay willow herb has a lovely almost tongue twisting name……
The marshes and pastures are covered with mints, glorious golden meadow buttercups (taller and more willowy than the ones we used to get grow up in our lawn) marsh woundwort looks like a dead nettle, red shank is more like a licorice allsort, its lozenge shape covered with tiny uncurled petals….and then there is the beautiful tufted vetch…it’s beautiful dreamy blue is the same soft hue of a bluebell, and it’s tiny curling tendrils and delicate floating leaves makes it possibly my favourite of favourites.
Tiny vases of these flowers have been adorning my work table over the Summer (I’m always careful what and where I pick them, a flower here, a flower there, never more than one stem at a time, and then only if there is lots growing)….the colours appear in patchwork, and embroidery, tiny brightly hued stitches of colour appear combined in unusual combinations, plant names are remembered and inspire patterns and new pieces……..
Because of all the rain we’ve had lately, the marshes are already getting a bit boggy and squelchy underfoot….I guess another few weeks and I’m going to have to change some of my short cuts and cut throughs…and then in the Winter some walks are near impassable, pastures disappearing under water for months at a time.
And it’s not just wild flowers with peculiar names….someone has been earning himself a few new ones……..maybe it is the change in weather but he’s been waking us up in the night, mostly just for a tummy rub before he’ll eat a 2 o’clock snack, then he’s up on the bed, suffling about like a little hedgehog, before he settles down, wanting coasing and fussing…..then we are lullabyed by a deep, sonorous snore. Because he’s been awake in the night, he gets super sleepy in the day time, and will happily curl up in some rather odd spots and cat nap…..I was trying to sort out my sewing table, cleared everything, went to make a pot of tea, only to return to find some “illegal parking” had been taken place…..ended up sewing round him as he seemed too content to be be moved.