Hedge Watch

Well are they Friday Walks or not? We don’t call them that any more, because they’re not on Fridays. But the same intention is behind them. To take time regularly, just for ourselves, to walk and to be still in the presence of nature. It’s good for us, we think it’s elemental.Hedge Watch01

And today’s walk is bursting with nature. After the slowest start we’ve ever known, and it’s still much colder than usual, Spring is now all around us. So we went to look at the hedges.

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Garlic Mustard.

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Pig Nut, a member of the carrot family. ‘In a survival situation you could dig this up and eat the tuber’ says Sarah. Fortunately we’ve brought lunch.

The walk itself is the ‘Shining Shore’ – the ‘home’ walk we think of as ‘our’ place. But you won’t see too many vast vistas of the Dee Estuary in what follows. Well, ok there are a few. But mainly you’ll see close ups, of Springtime in the hedgerows, on the borderland of Northern England and Wales. Walk with us through the glory of Spring, with not too many words to distract us. Hedge Watch03

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Behind the hedge the bees are out and thriving now.

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First bluebells are out in St Bartholomew’s graveyard.

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Very early Marigolds

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Green Alkanet.

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Red Dead Nettle.

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Grape Hyacinth or Muscari.

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Horse Tail is fruiting.

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Honesty or Lunaria. ‘A garden escape.’

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Blackthorn, starting to blossom.

This is one of the main things we’ve come to see. And it’s almost a month late. Usually in early April many of the hedges round here look like they’ve been snowed on with all the Blackthorn Blossom. This year, even though it’s almost May, they’re just getting going. We’ll see more as we walk down towards the Estuary.

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Dog Violet.

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More Oxalis.

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More violet

And now we get to the Blackthorn. By now this hedge is normally one of the main displays. And in a week or two it will be. Right now it’s full of buds, bursting with Springtime.

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And for the first time this week, two against nature.

And for the first time this week, two against nature.

Heswall Fields, a perfect tree.

Heswall Fields, a perfect tree.


And down by the Estuary, fully flowering Blackthorn.

And down by the Estuary, fully flowering Blackthorn.

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Dog Violet.

Dog Violet.



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By a secret little pond on the cliff top.

By a secret little pond on the cliff top.

The rapidly eroding cliff tops. Normally we see these from down on the beach. This time we walk along the top and see the collapse of the boulder clay cliffs beneath our feet.Hedge Watch40 Hedge Watch41 Hedge Watch42Hedge Watch44 Hedge Watch45

And one more time...

And one more time…

But even amidst erosion Springtime keeps right on happening.

The Maybush, Gorse.

The Maybush, Gorse.


And a final little clutch of dog violet.

And a final little clutch of dog violet.

Springtime on the Shining Shore. Late as maybe. Perfect nonetheless.


8 thoughts on “Hedge Watch

  1. The Accidental Amazon

    Thanks for taking us along! Finally, it’s bursting into spring here, too. Such a magical time of year. Expect to see little faeries flying around any minute now, although that might be prompted by my Celtic ancestry.xoxo

  2. stan cotter

    You make spring look so much nice. Especially to someone like me who knows precious little about flowers, perfect isnt enough Ronnie.

  3. cheethamlib

    What a wondrous evocation of spring in all its Northern Hemisphere glory. All those plants that we from the other side of the globe really don’t see very often. Some not at all. I love that so many of the flowers are blue and stand out so well amongst the shades of white and different greens.The hedgerows are amazing, it is good to see them obviously thriving. No wonder spring had such a magical significance in past times. You have captured all that in your amazing photographs.

    1. Ronnie Hughes Post author

      I didn’t used to see half of these ’til Sarah taught me where to look. Now the Shining Shore walk is like wandering round our garden looking for whether the tiny violets are out yet.


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