The sunshine-yellow of spring flowers is now scattered across the meadow and in the young woodland at Sun Rising – the native ‘lent lily’ daffodils, cowslips, lesser celandine, primroses, and the first dandelion or two. Big bumblebees and little honeybees are busy exploring, confirming that spring is now truly underway.
Looking up from ground level, however, we’re now starting to see the first trees coming into blossom. For a few weeks now, there have been the occasional little white stars of blackthorn flowers in the hedgerow, but now whole trees and sections along the boundary hedge are bright with the blossom and wonderfully humming with insect life. With field margin hedgerows cut so hard each year by farmers and landowners, we are glad to have areas of blackthorn at Sun Rising that we can leave, allowing the flowers to develop and blossom. They are such an important early source of food. Even more delightful, perhaps, are the few blackthorns planted as memorial trees, the older ones of which also now also in flower. I do hope the families are able to see them.
As well as blackthorn, the first of the wild cherry trees are also coming into blossom here. With slightly larger flowers, they are stately, elegant trees compared with the wild strength of the blackthorn. Having spent some time taking photographs yesterday, I couldn’t decide what to post here: the first wild cherry or the blackthorn. Then I found this one, above: I’d spent a while watching the blue tits in amongst the flowers, picking off the tiny little insects that are making the most of the sweet nectar. I wasn’t sure I’d captured any on camera. With plumage colours heightened for spring’s season of courting, this little one was hippety-hopping through the blossom, snacking and chit-chatting with a couple of companions. Just beautiful.