Until July 2017, documenting the seasons of coastal Dorset. I'm a complete amateur so don't trust I'm always right. If ever you see I'm wrong - whether with identifications or in anything else - do say! Meanwhile . . . I've now moved to Halifax in West Yorkshire. Click on the link below to collect the new URL. Don't forget to follow there!

Saturday, 19 November 2011


There's a little path I like. It goes down to a little beach - and I often go there. You've been with me before. It takes about one and a half minutes to walk down and the same coming back - probably less- yet the undergrowth is so dense and varied, I could write a post a week about this one short stretch and there would still be more to see.

This is a little of what I saw on 17th November 2011.

At the top of the path - Chicory Flowers.

A few years ago, I complained to our local council that it cut back blackberry bushes when fruit was on them - and, at the same time, raised questions about the spring trim in relation to nesting birds. I don't claim it was my email alone which got it changed. Indeed, it may have had absolutely nothing to do with it but, since then, the autumn tidy has happened later - and they've just done it so only the shorter chicory plants are still standing. They've had a bit of a tough time this year because the spring trim happened immediately after the first were tall. They are one of my favourite plants so I was pleased when others grew to replace them. I will miss the tall white stems they would have left through the winter if they'd been left uncut but there's no point in a path if you can't walk along it!

Summer here lasts long - right into autumn. Here's a Viper's Bugloss plant. It too has been cut. It has to be done - but look it was still in flower when it fell!

Also at the top of the path - a small maple. (You'll know from previous posts that I'm no good at distinguishing trees in this group so you may say "No! It's a sycamore!" or . . .) (I hope you won't pop up and say no! It's rhubarb!)

The light is uncertain. It flickers between sun and no-sun. The sea is impressive whatever the weather but, since this post is called 'Walking into the Blue', let's choose a sunny moment.

It's evening in mid-November so the sun is low and there's a glare on the water. It's also the time of year when seaweed washes up in bunches.

Back up the path and, caught in the blackberries (you could cut them back for a million miles and we wouldn't run out of blackberries!)  . . . keys from the maple / sycamore / (or even rhubarb!).



Mark Willis said...

Lovely pictures of the rhubarb! :)

Anonymous said...

Absolutely lovely - my favourite sort of post and my favourite sort of walk, plus my favourite colour...
I'm glad I'm not the only one who has trouble with maples/sycamores -the only ones I can tell apart are Japanese maples.
I think the difference between maples and sycamores may be the number of points on the leaves, so maybe I will go count some before they all blow away :)

PatioPatch said...

I too spotted Chicory this week Lucy - its common name is Blue sailors which is most approprite for this refreshing maritine walk. Loved walking in your footsteps

Toffeeapple said...

Thank you Lucy, I always enjoy your walks. The Chicory is a stunning blue. I'm pleased that your Council has seen sense, even if it wasn't just your e-mail that made it happen.

elaine rickett said...

I didn't realise that chicory grew wild - you learn something every day.

Donna@Gardens Eye View said...

Lucy I loved this walk into blue!!!

Looking for Blue Sky said...

Blue is my favourite colour so I'm loving these photos x

Anonymous said...

Isn't the sea just wonderful! Thank you for taking me down your path.

Elephant's Eye said...

Blue Sailors, what a wonderful name and a vibrant colour.

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

I do so love that chicory blue....beautiful.

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

Lucy said...

Hello Mark. Pooh Bear, I believe, said 'When in doubt, hum'. Paul Gallico reckoned that, when in doubt, cats wash. Some of us mutter 'rhubarb' instead! (Or 'Fred'.)

Hello Squirrel Basket - did you count the points on the leaves?

Hello Patio Patch. I find the idea of calling chicory 'Blue Sailors' oddly disconcerting. The flowers seem distinctly feminine.

Hello Toffee Apple - it's good when one can praise the council.

Hello Elaine - that's interesting because, although it is lovely, I don't think I have ever seen chicory growing not-wild.

Glad you enjoyed the walk, Donna.

Well, blue certainly should be your favourite colour, Looking For Blue Sky - and may you find it too - lots.

Hurtling Towards Sixty - I'd find it hard to live away from the sea. I could manage by a fast moving river but if there were no water, or if the water were too still, I'd be lonely.

Hello Elephant's Eye. It is, indeed, a vibrant colour.

Muddy Boot Dreams - wouldn't chicory blue be a wonderful colour for textiles? I remember one of the first posts I ever read on your blog included a picture of a blue and white cup and saucer. I think there was a blue hydrangea flower too.

Country Mouse Studio said...

Beautiful photos. I love the blue of Chicory.

Anonymous said...

Love the wild chicory. Have often thought (and then forgot) about growing this and now on my list for the allotment for next year. Thanks for gorgeous trip down to the sea.