Elizabeth Woodcock's blog

April 7th: Blackthorn: The Mother of the Woods

Blackthorn
The Mother of the Woods; the crossing from winter to spring.

The blackthorn blossom is still not open, later here than in the sheltered places, as storm Kathleen’s winds are howling from the South. If you’re seeing white in hedgerows now, it’s blackthorn, white blossoms of spring against the dark wood of winter bare, holding ominous spikes, that can puncture leather. Blood cleanser, digestive aid and rheumatism easer.

March 25th: over 2000 trees planted

Sandilands tree planters

A couple of weekends ago I was talking about attracting wildlife to new build gardens at PACT’s tool and seed swap day. Collecting information through a variety of sources, a neighbour mentioned that at Knepp Estate, Isabella Tree said their squadrons of goldfinches came back when they let the blackthorn grow. Birds love thickets for food and shelter. Here in my urban garden the bluetits haven’t come back to nest yet.

Feb 18th: worth getting out of bed for

Sandilands tree planting

The snow is lying in the hollows of the hills which rest above the fields like a great backbone with their white ribs of snow. The cold tang in the air, and I'm thinking about prevailing wind direction and there isn't one. We're so close to Cross and Great Dun fell, that give us a North East blast, but then on other days there's a southwest current rippling over the valley from the lakes.