busy

As I am too busy to write more than a few words, I thought I’d just post a photograph and this seemed the “busiest” picture I’d taken in a while.

Then I stopped to wonder what the plant was and it occurred to me that if every one of those flowers turns into a fruit of some sort, it must be one of the shrubs that is covered in tiny berries through the autumn and winter. I don’t know many shrub names, but it seems likely it’s a variety of cotoneaster.

My pronunciation of that is something akin to KO-tun-ee-aster, but having written it down, I’ve remembered my mother’s humorous referrals to the cotton-Easter plant. Which makes it almost topical.

spring lamb with floral trimmings

It’s Bank Holiday weekend. Not May Day weekend, as it should be; nor yet “Spring bank holiday”, as I thought it might be. It’s simply “Early May bank holiday”, an anodyne phrase with no dangerous political connotations to offend or inspire.

It poured with rain half the night and is still damp and unappealing outdoors and uninspiring indoors, so I thought I’d brighten things up with some recent photos.

 spring blossom
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stars and stats

The poetry course that I’m taking started with a discussion of sand and stars. More precisely, with the statement that there are ten times as many stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on Earth. (If you’re interested, here’s the maths that backs up the estimate.) I don’t think we mentioned, though, that there are more atoms in a single grain of sand than there are stars in the universe.

Either way, macrocosmos or microcosmos, a number that big is hard to comprehend, and the human brain tends to look for simplifications and ideas closer to home.

I’ve just been out in the garden and, unlikely as it seems, I suppose I’ll just have to assume there are more stars in the universe than there are blossoms on the plum tree.

plum blossom

“all ye need to know”

One problem with travelling is that half the time you don’t know what you’re looking at.

I am probably less familiar now with the flora and fauna of the UK than with that of Spain, and I have no idea what the tree I photographed this morning was.

white blossom, early spring, UK
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spring is sprung

Well, Google tells me that it’s the first day of spring today, although to be honest, the sky is more wintry than I’ve seen it in weeks, if not months. So the photos aren’t from today – and they aren’t all from my garden – although they were all taken during the last week:

plum blossom
plum blossom
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playing gooseberry

(Click here for a picture of male and female kiwi flowers)

As I’ve mentioned before, when I first saw kiwi fruit back in the Seventies, they were called Chinese gooseberries. But, although the fruit are greenish and furry and have tiny seeds, they aren’t really anything like gooseberries.

Or so I thought until we started growing them.

kiwi fruit in the early stages of development
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male and female created he them

I posted a picture of what I mistakenly thought was a white laburnum a while back, and am amazed how many people have since turned up here after searching on that term.

It makes me think that other people may find this picture of male and female kiwi blossoms useful:

male kiwi flowers shown alongside female kiwi flowers
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