Sunday, 9 August 2015

Time goes by

The geometric thistles I photographed in July are now demonstrating their final amazing piece of evolutionary adaptation, thistledown. Thousands of seeds waiting to be carried across the fields to start the process again. Each seed has the equivalent of a feather or parachute attached to it. Before they take flight they look like bundles of very soft fur.


I still don't want them in my garden though.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

And more patterns

Once you start noticing patterns they are everywhere. Look how beautiful this Goat's Beard seed head is. It is much larger and more complex than a Dandelion. Each of the individual seed head tops forms a neat polygon with the next.

Goat's-Beard Tragopogon pratensis

The plant is also known as Jack-go-to-bed-at-noon. The photograph doesn't do it justice.

Sunday, 12 July 2015


I'm always in awe of nature's patterns. Just look at the complexity of this thistle bud. 

Bud of the thistle Carduus nutans

Nature just does this, while man has to use all science's weapons to try and measure and understand the patterns. Mathematics, Physics, Biology. We like to organise and catalogue nature.

I'm very taken with the colours of the thistle, but prefer it in the countryside away from my garden

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Spot the Spider

Nature never ceases to amaze me. Just look how this green spider has found leaves which match its colour so well.

Green spider on variegated Holly

And here is a close up of the spider

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Philosophical Thoughts

I've been thinking about Nature and Natural. I think there needs to be some rules as to what can go on the Nature Table.

The definition of Nature, according to Wiki:

Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, or material world or universe. "Nature" can refer to the phenomena of the physical world, and also to life in general.

Well that means the table is going to have to be huge!

But what about Natural? 

: existing in nature and not made or caused by people : coming from nature
: not having any extra substances or chemicals added : not containing anything artificial

Now that is where it gets complicated.

A typical Norfolk landscape, but very little of it could be called natural. The trees may have self seeded, but their shape will have been influenced by people.

As custodian of The Nature Table I am going to make an executive decision. Not being exclusively Natural is not necessarily a bar to sitting on the table.

Barley turning golden in the sunshine

If a beautiful field of highly cultivated barley can be included, it also means I can have the odd garden plant from time to time.
Heuchera displayed in a vintage wheelbarrow

And I haven't started on the physical world yet!

Very Large Table Required

The good thing about a virtual nature table is that you can include things which wouldn't fit on an ordinary one.

I wonder who lives here? I suspect a vole or a mole. 

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

What is Nature?

So what can go on the table? Does it have to be natural?  Well not totally.

This is a field of "garden" peas. Not really natural. Few weeds or other plants to be seen amongst the crop. A great deal of chemicals must have been deployed, but I still think they deserve a place on the table.