This morning we went to Mickfield Meadow, the oldest nature reserve in Suffolk. This hay meadow has never been sprayed with agrochemicals or fertilized, consequently the turf is a fantastic mix of wildflowers and grasses and it is one of only four remaining sites in Suffolk where you can see wild Snake's Head Fritillaries. This small damp grassy field surrounded by high hedges and trees is an island in a vast modern agricultural landscape of large pristine fields of arable crops with hardly a field weed to be seen. Like a tiny scrap of ancient beautifully embroidered fabric on a clean museum shelf.
We were a couple of weeks too early to see the Fritillaries in all their splendour, one or two flowers were just opening but the Cowslips and Wild Anemones were a taster of the beautiful milleflora carpet which will continue throughout the summer.
Our treat was lunch at Harveys Garden Plants – the Orchard Room serves delicious food made with local produce (the eggs are from the hens that live in the orchard). The covered plant display area featured some unusual spring plants for woodland and shady areas . . .
. . . you wouldn't expect anything less than perfection from a Chelsea Gold Medal winner!
Oh, did I buy anything? Silly question! After admiring the fantastic dried seed-heads decorating the Orchard Room, we decided to buy two plants each of allium giganteum and allium christophii.