It was rather grey and cold ❄️❄️☔️ today (I still am not enjoying the cold weather) but Pip 🐶 and I decided to venture out.
February is a good time of year as, although it feels like the cold may never go away and it is dark and dreary and freezing, the flowers are beginning to appear 🌱🌸🌺🌼.
I find it very reassuring that every year, despite the cold❄️, the trees 🌳 and plants 🌱 begin to flower 🌼, it is definitely the best sign that spring is on it’s way – a dash of bright colour 🌻 amongst all the dark greens and browns.
So Pip 🐶 and I went to investigate, and found much to look at.
Daffodils 🌼are out in force, despite the cold, and we found some lovely little Narcissus cyclamineus with their heads bowed down. I always think these little daffodils look a bit like tiny horses 🐎 with their ears back, suspiciously investigating something on the ground – they are rather sweet! The narcissus bulbocodium are also dotted about, their little trumpet-like 📣 petals are always so delightful – they are definitely more bossy than the cyclamineus.
There are crocuses (or croci) 🌷 just starting to open their petals – I love the lilac and orange combination, they are very non-fussed flowers, they just flower where and when they feel like it, without too much worry of what anyone might think – Pip and I came across a solo crocus growing in the middle of the path..
The magnolias 💐 are still tentative, they haven’t opened their furry buds up to the cold yet, I always think the many huge buds make them look like some prehistoric creature lying in wait 🐉.
The faithful snowdrops 🌾are sprouting up everywhere, I love their plant name ‘galanthus’ from the Greek gála ‘milk’ 🍶 and ánthos ‘flower’ 🌼, it sounds rather like a character from Game of Thrones 🐲.
We found a very brave cherry 🍒 , Prunus okame, which is a really warm pink against the cold greens. I love 💕💞💘 cherry 🍒blossom 🌸 a very large amount.
AND most excitingly, the Camellias 🌺 are emerging, and we came across many bright pinks 🌺 and pale pinks 🌸.
I really like Camellias 🌺, they are one of my favourite flowers, I prefer the ones without the bright yellow stamens. We came across a lovely Camellia japonica ‘Australis’ – a very good pink indeed, magenta, with beautifully arranged petals, I also love how the just emerging buds 🌷 look, so fairy tale esque.
Camellias 🌺are part of the Theaceae family and they originate from the Eastern Himalayas, Japan and Malaysia – they are happiest growing by streams 🌊 or on rocky hillsides 🗻. They have been cultivated in China and Japan for over 1000 years (a very long time) and were first cultivated for the oil 🏮 from their seeds, then for tea ☕️ (you can actually buy tea made from English Camellias at Tregothnan– made from Camellia sinensis – they sell it is Fortnums too, if your after some in a hurry) And then just because they are pretty to look at. There are around 200 species of them and they were named after the Jesuit ⛪️ botanist 🌿 Georg Joseph Kamel. The petals 🌺 of the flowers are exquisitely arranged and the trees 🌿have wonderful dark green leathery leaves. They are really very splendid.
We had a quick plant lesson ✏️📚 over supper, so now everything is a little clearer…
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