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, 22 March 2014


"Nice bush," said the boy, slowing his bike.
"Elderberry," I called.
He looked back, surprised. Then he pedaled faster to catch his fast moving flock of friends.
I don't know whether he was surprised because the tree has a name or because I spoke.

New little leaves and tiny flower bud on elderberry bush/tree

Either way, he was wrong about the tree. It is not a 'nice bush'. It's lost its shape. It's flat faced. Shaved back. But . . . BUT . . . little leaves are sprouting and tiny flower buds less than a centimeter across are clearly visible. (Clearly visible, that is, if you are prepared to stick your eyes up close to the surprise of passing boys.)
* * *

There's one boy I know who wouldn't be surprised in the least - naturalist Sonny Riddell who lives and observes in Dumfries-shire, Scotland. Last year, Sonny (who is eight) presented a short documentary called 'Signs of Spring'.

Sonny (whose birthday is next Wednesday!) is enthusiastically interested in the natural world - especially in moths. Of his presentations, my favourite is about Moths and Moth Traps.

* * *
On the Loose and Leafy Tree Following Page, I've offered to publish observations on behalf of Tree Followers who have no other way of posting them to the internet. Tree Watcher is the first to have emailed me material. (Magnolia.) It's quite substantial so I've set up a companion blog called 'Other People's Pictures'. If you are a reader without a blog who would like to post about your tree - please send your material by 1st April at the latest. I know this is a bit early but I'll need a bit of time to get it ready in time for the Tree Following Link Box on the 7th of the month.

Three pigeons sitting in a tree by sea.

Three topics. Three pigeons. One tree.
What tree?
* * *

Sonny Riddell - Signs of Spring
Sonny Riddell - Moths and Moth Traps
'Tree Watcher's' first Tree Following Post - Tree Following By Mail
For links to Tree Following posts in the March Link Box - CLICK HERE.


elaine said...

Won't be long before the flower heads will be ready for turning into cordial - my favourite

elaine said...

P.s. Sonny was a little sweetie, bless him.

Rambling Woods said...

I love Sonny and his videos.... I can also put them up on my blog....fantastic.... Michelle

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams said...

That's a gorgeous photo of the doves in the tree...sigh.


Hollis said...

I hope to use one of Sonny's wonderful videos soon -- about moths and Citizen Science. I'm so glad there are people like him in this world! thanks for sharing

Dartford Warbler said...

Sonny is wonderful - the next Chris Packham maybe?

That`s a lovely photo of sea through the bare branches of a tree.

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Elaine. I tried making elderflower cordial once (I like it a lot) but it went off before any was drunk.

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Rambling Woods. It would be great if you were to put his videos on your blog. It is his intention to be a naturalist when he grows up. He's getting off to a serious start and I reckon he'll feel being on more blogs will be a real endorsement of his work.

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Jen. Glad you like the doves. There are several kinds round here and I think these are wood pigeons.

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

That would be brilliant, Hollis, if you were to use his videos on your blog. Do you have similar Citizen Science projects (like the moth one) in Wyoming? Or will you be floating it as an idea?

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Dartford Warbler. I think Sonny is hoping to be a successor to David Attenborough. Glad you like the birds and tree and sea picture. Before long leaves break will out and the view will disappear.

Hollis said...

Lucy, you read my mind -- from across the Atlantic! I'm very excited about Citizen Science and hope to start a project this summer in southeast Wyoming. Right now I'm checking out websites and aps, and hope to have a post up about it in a few weeks.

About your reply to Dartford Warbler: when I watched the signs of spring video, I thought of David Attenborough immediately!

Pat Webster said...

My favourite bit in the Sonny Riddell video is when he talks about snowdrops: "Although they can be poisonous to eat, they are a cure for aging." Yes -- death cures aging rather quickly! A gem of a link, thanks Lucy!

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Pat - that bemused me too. Glad you like the link.