Celia Hart's blog about what's going on in and around her studio.
Art, printmaking, inspirations, gardening, vegetables, hens, landscapes, wild flowers, East Anglia, adventure, travel.

Saturday, 12 April 2008

A lonely meadow


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.

9 comments:

  1. Yummy, I have both those alliums growing at home - they're fantastic and I think I'm right in saying that they're easily divided too. I divided mine for the first time last year and I'm hoping to have a border teaming with them this year.

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  2. and I can hardly wait to see those giganteums! I planted them for the first time two years ago and love them so much.

    Diane
    PS: How are the hens?

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  3. HI Celia

    I have nominated you for an Arty Pico award ( see my blog for info).

    I would love to see your prints in person one day!

    And I am enjoying tomatoes at the moment- even late for Oz- but the taste is sensational!

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  4. It looks as if the journey was worth it even though the fritillaries are not out yet. And it's a good excuse to go back again in a couple of weeks.
    It's the same here with the bluebells-they are coming but another two weeks will see them in their full glory.
    Lovely choice for your purchases.

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  5. I love allium, have you ever let a leek go to seed, they have amazing seed heads too. Mickfield Meadow sounds great, I only have about two cowslips come up in my garden, my dad has a lawn full, I love them too. I think I almost love everything in the garden, would struggle to find a favourite. x

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  6. Mickfield Meadow looks like a wonderful spot. Thanks for the tip, I haven't heard of it before.

    Cowslips are a favourite with me!

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  7. Did I tell you that I started my rooftop garden with a plantatio of carrots? I think they have been frozen to death already, not one shoot! HELP!!!

    Cheers
    David

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  8. Celia,
    Sounds like a nice day!

    And because today is my blog birthday … I invite you for cake (or a look at a cake)!

    I’ve listed your blog as on of my FAVORITES this year and I’m adding you to my new blog roll side bar.

    Cheers!

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  9. Lucy - I hope the alliums do increase!

    Diane - thank you, the hens are in fine form although we have had some very cold easterly winds which they don't like.

    Dijanne - oh thank you so much - my next post will show some stitching!!!!

    Threadspider - I hope we get some warm sunny days to enjoy the bluebells.

    Louise - how fantastic cowslips really cheer up a lawn.

    CS - the Wildlife Trust reserves are worth seeking out.

    David - I'm not great at growing carrots myself! I think the cold weather upsets the germination as does excessive wet at the wrong time! Don't dispair they may well appear if we have a few warm days.
    Meanwhile start some French beans in pots and plant them out in May.

    Hi Meg - Happy Blog Birthday!!! I spotted that yummy cake earlier! And thank you so much for the link.

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