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!

Sunday, 3 August 2014


There are always surprises. The absence of summer is one. There's been been heat. Yes. (Rather a lot.) It's been dry. Yes. (Too dry.)

Seeds of an umbelliferous plant in a hedgerow
But in Loose and Leafy terms we've leapt from spring to autumn in one bound. Which I don't mind because autumn is my favourite time of year. Autumn in the midst of summer. We've had some rain. (If only it hadn't come all at once and as fast as it could and all concentrated in an hour.) Some freshening breezes would be welcome now.

This recent and sudden and explosive rain has battered haws out of the May Trees. The ground is spattered with them - brown and unripe.

Unripe elder berries against a blue sky with hawthorn leaves

It has knocked down elderberries. See the gaps? Fortunately, there are many left. It has beaten up convolvulus leaves and mangled chicory petals . . . but has also, somehow, released the butterflies. They are all over the place. Yesterday I saw a dragon fly.

There are other surprises. Surprises which come every year but which I forget in between.

Purple sweet pea flowers tangled with flowering nettles
Like the way garden plants creep into hedgerows and tangle with the nettles. The hedges are high and often on top of a bank. I'm not always sure which plants have worked their way up from tended gardens and which have self seeded - or are the remnants of gardens where houses once were but were demolished in the last century.
Here are sweet peas climbing above the nettles. See their pods?

Blackberries (leaves and flowers and unripe fruit) circling blue sky
Click to enlarge if you'd like to find the fly!

I went back to find 'my blackberry' - the one we saw a bee on. The bit of grass I'd tied to a branch to mark the place had fallen off or . . . or . . . the branch it was tied to had itself vanished. Maybe it got in someone's way. Maybe the rain was briefly so heavy it drooped into the bushes.

I took photographs where I thought it almost was then, when I got home, spent ages comparing the new picture with the one I'd taken last week. Nope. Not the same branch. Pretty though. And the surprise - a fly on a flower.

It often happens. You take a picture. You take it home. You put it on a screen - and there, bang in the middle - something you hadn't seen. Something you'd never have seen otherwise.

These are the joys of the ignoramus. There's nothing wrong with knowing. Of course not. I'm unduly proud when I 'know' something or learn something new; but as I nearly always everything within five minutes of finding it out - the world's forever full of surprise. Knowing nothing can be . . . well, I find it fun.

* * *
Smooth sow-thistle poking above high wall in front of office building with open windows
You know the Stuck Foot Posts . . . and the Street Plant Posts?

Both are occasional.

Stuck-Foots are thoughtful. Street-Plants are adventures.

Both are fun.

Do you write them too? In case you'd like an easy way to let others know about yours . . .

In addition to the regular link box for Tree Following (on the 7th of every month)

There will be link boxes on Loose and Leafy several times a year for these other kinds of post. If we put dates beside the entries they can be round-ups rather than the regular kind of meme.

Link Box Dates for Stuck Foot Posts
November     21st - 25th
January         21st - 25th
March           21st - 25th
May              21st - 25th
July               21st - 25th
September     21st - 25th
November     21st - 25th

Link Box Dates for Street Plant Posts
December    21st - 25th
February      21st - 25th
April            21st - 25th
June             21st - 25th
August         21st - 25th
October        21st - 25th
December    21st - 25th.

Both kinds of post now have their own pages for information. They give dates for link boxes, an opportunity to ask for reminders and an invitation to include your blog in a list of bloggers who make occasional Stuck Foot or Street Plant posts.

Do let me know if you'd like your name to be added to the list. (Leave a comment or email me at looseandleafy@googlemail.com)


amanda peters said...

Hi Lucy, you are right , there was a Autumn feel to the day to day, the wind was up and felt fresh after all that rain, flowers are fading and the wild flower meadow has been cut... :(
Spring is my faviouret time with Autumn second, will make a note and join in with your posts.
Been having age related moments...! So ignore any odd comments I might have sent you..
Amanda xx

Hollis said...

I'm definitely a Street Plant Blogger -- I'm hooked. It's really fun, though I don't know what I'll do from Nov thru March

Lucy Corrander at Loose and Leafy said...

Hello Amanda. I began having 'age-related' moments as soon as I entered reception class in infant school and they haven't let up since!

Hello Hollis. I nearly didn't include winter months - and of course I don't know what you will find in your region. However, I have been astonished how many plants carry on through the winter here (like Shepherd's Purse). And how early 'spring' comes. Common Whitlow Grass (Erophila verna) has been one of my big surprises - so tiny it's almost invisible, growing between cobbles in a speed bump.

Amanda and Hollis. Looking forward to your posts. You've certainly come up trumps with the ones you have already published. I now have the challenge of remembering to put link boxes on the blog at the right 'moments'!

Anonymous said...

As always a fascinating,and informative, post with wonderful pictures. Flighty xx