Wednesday, 14 April 2010


Everywhere was green this morning as we walked around the old American Adventure site. The trees are almost all bursting forth with bright, fresh leaves and flower buds. The dominant flower colour seems to be white at the moment, but a couple of trees and shrubs were 'bucking the trend' by valiantly displaying different hues. The first of these is familiar to us all and indeed can usually be found in bloom every day of the year. I speak, of course, of Gorse (Ulex europaeus).
Alternatively known as Furze or Whin, this rather prickly shrub is a member of the pea family and is native to nearly all of Western Europe. Gorse is highly resistant to - and indeed in some cases dependent upon - fire. The seed pods are opened by wildfires and the seeds distributed thereafter. But it is the golden, yellow flowers which surely are it's crowning glory.
A rather strange flower next, inasmuch as it has green petals and can therefore be missed when in bloom. They are nonetheless beautiful when viewed close up. The Norway Maple (Acer platanoides).
Not a native of Britain, this species comes from Eastern and Central Europe and Asia. The flowers are always a good indication that Spring has sprung, appearing, as they do, before the leaves and therefore giving good views of their lime-green colour.
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