Saturday, February 28, 2009

Snowdrop time

Every year I feel obliged to photograph snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis), I suppose because they are among the very first flowers of the new season and have a chilly, but cheerful, elegance.

20090228a Snowdrops 107

They are not thought to be a native species in the British Isles and they rarely seem to grow far away from houses, roadsides or streamsides here in East Sussex.  The first record in the wild was not until 1778, but they were known in cultivation well before that.

It has been suggested that snowdrops were the source of the magical herb called 'moly' used by Odysseus to protect him against Circe's spells and there is much of the usual folklore associated with well-known plants.

Once the flowers have faded they leaves follow quite quickly and I find it quite poignant that when spring is really getting going the snowdrop is retiring from the world for another season.

Friday, February 20, 2009

The magic pool

Yesterday we made a visit to nearby Bodiam Castle.  There has been much rain lately and a large pool of water remained in the field between the car park and the castle grounds.  This produces some interesting reflections.

I took this picture looking north with the pool in the foreground:

20090219 Bodiam 050

A few moment later, from the other side of the pool I took this picture looking south across the Rother valley:

20090219 Bodiam 056

Same stretch of water, but a different reflection.  It all depends, as they say, on your point of view.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Sun on snow

On an afternoon walk in a snowy landscape on a grey afternoon, the sun suddenly broke through the clouds and illuminated a distant field.

20090203 Sedlescombe snow field 008