Pilewort or Lesser celandine (Ficaria verna), flowering between January and April; these lovers of damp woodland pathways, stream banks and ditches, can be found in gardens, meadows and shady hedgerows, and even Narnia, yes, Narnia! ✨
An important nectar source for early emerging insects from hibernation, such as Queen Bumblebees 🐝
Lesser celandine were used to treat haemorrhoids, hence “Pilewort” and scurvy, due to being high in Vitamin C.
Dwelling in moist places; Alder grow near rivers, ponds, lakes and in wet, swampy woods, also known as Carrs.
Their flowers were used as green dye, to colour and camouflage the clothes of outlaws, like Robin Hood and to also colour the clothes of fairies 🧚🏻♂️
Flowering between February and April, Alder catkins provide an early source of nectar and pollen for Bees, and the seeds are eaten by Goldfinches, Siskins and Redpolls.
The pale wood turns a deep orange after being cut, giving the impression of bleeding. So, in the past, many people feared them and the Irish thought it was unlucky to pass one on a journey 😅
The roots have nitrogen-fixing nodules, conditioning the soil and improving soil fertility on former industrial wasteland and brownfield sites.
It was said that a few Alder leaves placed in the shoes before a long journey would cool the feet and prevent swelling 🤷🏻♂️
Being a tough species of tree, their wood doesn’t rot when waterlogged, instead it makes them harder and stronger. Plus, mature trees can reach a height of approximately 28 metres and live to around 60 years.
Made in October 2011 [VIDEOS], three great things to look out for this month: acorn crazy Jays, Rutting Fallow Deer & fun looking Fungi!
🥜 🦌 🍄
Apologies for the inaccuracies in the Fungi video; pronunciation of hallucinogenic and apparently you can eat Amethyst Deceivers – but it is better to be safe than sorry! (No matter how good a recipe sounds!)
Today I went a 30 minute walk along the Worcester & Birmingham Canal from Selly Oak, heading south towards Bournville 🙂
I’m not against cyclists, at all, but it would have been a lot more peaceful – and easier to take photos – if I didn’t have to get out of the way of people on bikes every 2 minutes! 😛
Along the way I heard plops in the water, a couple times I hoped it was a Water Vole, but it turned out to be fish. I didn’t see much Wildlife, the odd Moorhen and Mallard – so I decided to focus on the flora I came across and just before I came to end of my walk I came across something I deem as special. Below is what I saw:
Just as my allocated 30 minutes was coming to an end, I came across this beauty below! 😀
Yesterday was a very long day… The Beach Clean only lasted two minutes, but there was the early start, the traveling and finding somewhere with WiFi (the connection was awfully slow) not far from the beach – so I could finish yesterday’s blog and do a blog for that day – to share what I had done before the journey back home. Getting to grips with my friend Gary’s video editing software and waiting for the video to upload to YouTube was very time consuming. We both got home very late!
More positively; this morning I caught up on Countryfile! Which funnily enough was in Somerset for yesterday’s episode! I decided in the afternoon I would venture a little into the South Birmingham/North Worcestershire countryside (which I grew up next door to) 🙂 I came across three discoveries, one more exciting than the other!
1. An old brick bridge that is part of a Public Footpath – which leads from suburban greenspace into the countryside – has been cleared underneath, revealing it fully and making it a lot more accessible to walk under.The tree lined path that leads away below the bridge had been tidied as well!
2. Two flights of steps have been created/installed! On either side of Princess Diana Way – a short walk down from the bridge. You walk up into a meadow (unfortunately not pictured below) with the Farmer’s field going round it.
I followed the steps leading up the other side, to pass over the old bridge and come back on myself – to follow another Public Footpath which leads you deaper into the countryside, through an underpass to the other side of the M5 Motorway. I took a few snaps before that.
3. I’m a fair distance away from the bridge now on the other side of the M5, I’ve just had a brief explore of Doctor’s Coppice and have come back into the meadow I’ve just walked across. The pictures and captions below will end the tale 😉
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