Monday, May 26, 2014

A Bank Holiday Bog!

On Saturday my new (ish) boots and I set off for North Norfolk to see Mum and Dad for lunch and a walk.

After some legendary directions from mum along the lines of:
Mum "Go along the road you came in on"
Me  "I came on the Swaffham Road"
Mum "No, not that one.  Then turn right!" - at this point I had no idea which direction she meant at all, but somehow we ended up at the carpark in Wolferton by the sign that said 'Dersingham Bog'.

When we were kids we used to access the bog from the track along the side of the tip and use it as a short cut to the Station Museum at Wolferton where we played (without permission) on the handcar  (as in 'The Great St Trinian's Train Robbery".

Now the area is managed by Natural England  and contains many rare mosses etc.  It's a bog, not a fen, because it's on acidic soil whereas Fens are on alkaline soil.

We had a lovely walk on the board walk, as walked on by Tony Robinson in his recent programme 'Walking Through History', where the cotton grass was everywhere.

Then we walked around to the Wolferton Cliffs from where we could just see across the wash to Boston and Skegness in Lincolnshire.  Although Wolferton is now several miles inland the cliffs are evidence of its past shoreline location.

There was a beautiful low lying glade, that I couldn't resist scrambling down into

and of course the rhododendrons were stunning as they always are this time of year.

The rest of my weekend has mainly been spent in the garden dodging the showers and repairing a hearth with fire cement (but more about that another time).

I hope you've all enjoyed the long weekend too.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

A Reluctant Day Out

Earlier on this week my neighbour knocked on the back door "I'd like to go to the Hadleigh Show on Saturday, do you want to come to with me?" she asked.  Now what was going through my head was "not really, I'd much rather spend the day in the garden, and it's quite expensive isn't it" but what came out of my mouth was "well if it's a nice day it might be quite nice"! Arrangements were made that we'd leave here at 10am if it was nice.

Today dawned, beautifully sunny and by 9.30am it didn't look as though she was even up so I thought I'd got away with it and we wouldn't be going. I started digging compost into my runner bean bed but a few minutes later she appeared and off we went.

I've never been to a country show and I have to admit that, despite my reluctance to be dragged away from my garden, it was really good and I thoroughly enjoyed it!

We saw lots of rural crafts, stonemasons and woodcarvers as well as the willow weaver and spinners.

We watched a stunning falconry display (no photos they were too fast!) and a display of working sheepdogs herding ducks!

This actually wasn't as daft as it sounds and the trainer talked about how he took rescue dogs and trained them by working with their natural instincts and how our energy fields affect animals.

There were donkeys,

sheep of all different sizes and shapes - some native to Suffolk,

and some from further afield (Wensleydale),

as well as cows and a large range of poultry.

There were some super local food producers, I bought some gorgeous blue cheese from Suffolk Farmhouse Cheeses but I have to admit the food tent was too crowded for me to enjoy so I didn't explore it fully.

Desperate for a cup of tea we then headed off to a wonderful local nursery that I frequent quite regulary, The Place for Plants, for a cuppa and some obligatory plant purchasing (not too many in my case as I'm planning to go to my other favourite local nursery, Paugers Plants, next week).

All in all it was a lovely day, and I'm very glad I went, even if I am slightly sun burnt!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

A Bank Holiday Walk

We had lovely weather here over the bank holiday so I decided to set off on a walk to Cornard Mere, the Suffolk Wildlife Trust reserve that I'd read about when writing my post on bluebells.  I'd been a little worried that I wouldn't be able to find the footpath but as you can see it was very clear.

The ground was a dry as dust, apparently we get less rainfall here than the Sahara Desert does but we're not classed as a desert as our rain is spread throughout the year.

The website had said to 'take the footpaths to the south and the west to view the reserve' which is what I did.   However 'view' might not quite be the right word.  Every now and then, if I clambered through the nettles I got a tantalising glimpse of the wetland, but it was so over grown I couldn't really 'view' the main mere at all!

(Click on the photo above to enlarge it and you'll just see the main open mere in the background)

At one point there were lots of reeds which must give shelter to many birds and wildlife.

Despite not seeing any water birds, nor indeed hearing the elusive water rail (which was what I really wanted to hear), it was a lovely walk around the edge of the reserve and I did hear and see a chiffchaffs and blackcaps.


Time for the return walk, across the field towards the hedges of hawthorn

and the verges of cow parsley.

A nice walk, just not quite what I'd expected - I hope you all had a good bank holiday too.