As I mentioned yesterday, if I’ve had a walk out over the marsh I often turn down a little path that runs behind the back of a local golf course….a skinny copse of trees edges the green and for the most part it’s allowed to run wild….there’s been a lot of “conservation” work going on over the marshes and nearby Denby wood of late and personally I think it’s all been done a bit heavy handed, but trees and undergrowth seem to be allowed to just do their own thing here……….
There’s small pockets where frosty fingers haven’t reached and this tends to be full of birds, busy turning over leaves, rooting around for insects, grubs, anything wriggly to eat…..I’m ignored by most of them though one Robin flys over to where I’m watching them with his head cocked, this way, that way…. then when he realizes I don’t have anything with me he gives me a quick chirrup of song before he flies back to the other birds. Everytime I try and take pictures of the wild birds here I end up not apppreciating what I’m actually seeing… (also my pictures come out looking dreadful, all blurred and too distanty*)
But what I can share is how beautiful the braken was that morning….all golden and warm toned with the sunlight shining on it….all those delicate fronds , repeating away into nothing…..I love bracken, from when it first appears and is so bright and granny smith coloured, all curled in on itself and then slowly opening up to reveal the deepest Christmas tree green…..in part it brings back happy memories of playing on the common near where I grew up, running around half wild as the bracken would tickle my legs, making dens and head quarters as we played war games…..or deer watching with my mum and dad where we’d get up really early, drive out to pockets of woodland near to where we lived and then quietly walk and watch the deer, as the mist over the fields cleared the stag and does would head back into the woodland and the cover of trees……
So all those memories flood back back I walk through here…..I love the shape the bracken forms and that brown is so gleaming, all shades of precious metal, and almost amber coloured in parts….. (as soon as I got home a big tin of embroidery threads was emptied as I tried to capture those fragile frosty fronds in silk and stitches…..)
There’s also gorse on the marshes, all prickles and mustardy blossoms…..it looked so breathtaking with it’s sparkling frosty shimmer….parts of the gorse were almost sagey green and teal in colour.
When it’s Summer and the blossoms are warm I like to carefully pick some and eat them, all velvety and swtet, they almost melt away on my tongue….apparently you can make a nice wine from their blossoms but I’m thinking you’d need to pick quite a lot and to have hardy old finger tips.
In warmer months the gorse is so full of fat bees, softly buzzing and tumbling over the blossom, it’s quite eerie to see it so bare of insect life.
A patch of lichen catches my eye….it’s such a bright vomity mustard, a real contrast to the muted frosty colours everywhere else….it’s all mouldy and scabby looking but such a fierce strong colour. I feel like I’ve found the pot of gold at the end of rainbow…….a golden treasure near the end of my walk.
There’s actually lots of lichen growing in this section of the marsh, mostly it’s that glorious, heart uplifting gold that does you the world of good to see, but there are softer shades as well, this delicate teal, all trembly and barely there like gold leaf flakes that have just been finger pressed down….the copse and undergrowth are so quiet to explore when it’s cold….(no shouts of “four” from the golf course as I think it’s a bit early and too nippy) and is so rich in colour, shape and texture. I never fail to go home all inspired with new ideas and colour combinations.
* if you’d like to see some truly beautiful photographs of wild birds then head over to Jeni Reid’s Instagram page…..I first saw her work on Wovember but love her photographs of birds in her garden