November Cross-section, including Holly

Antiquity may excuse many things, but not bad verse. How grown-up people can stand and sing the old carol about the holly and the ivy in all seriousness, I don’t know: “The Holly and the Ivy, when they are both full-grown…Of all the trees that are in the wood, the holly bears the crown.”

What has ‘full-grown’ got to do with it? And when did ivy qualify as a tree? And why do we have running deer suddenly appearing later on? Beats me…
But when you have a tree laden with holly berries, the effect is goodHolly has been seeding itself all over of late. It never used to. But there are small seedlings all over my patch of woodland and they will grow fast. Quite apart from the prickles, holly is dangerous stuff to have around, as any trailing tip will root, and there will be a horrible thicket before you know where you are. It does burn with a satisfactory crackle, though.

It’s still too mild for comfort. I need frost to stop the primulas rotting, but we are not getting it.  The winter-flowering primulas are early. Here is p.moupinensis – which should not really be out before Christmas:Primula sonchifolia has lost all the cabbage-like leaves of summer and has reverted to its large egg-shaped resting buds. It really needs to be covered by snow. In January or February it will push out half-hidden heads of pale blue flowers:I’ve never had a lot of time for seed heads as decorative objects, but I make an exception for the various types of cow-parsley. The structure is such a brilliant way of getting every last flower into the sun.Now the azalea leaves are gone, the clumps of lichen which have grown on their branches become visible. Lichen is supposed to be a sign of pollution-free air. I’m pleased if that is so.


11 thoughts on “November Cross-section, including Holly

  1. I was going to ask if the birds don’t eat the berries, but you covered that. Holly is so beautiful with say Douglas Fir boughs, and pine, laden on the mantle or over the door… Where is your romance Kininvie? And of course it becomes a tree, if you don’t burn it first. But it is kind of dangerous with all those thorns. I wonder, would it make a good murder weapon?

    I agree with Alberto about the cow parsley image, very nice.

  2. I know what its like, but you are international now, you just have to keep the dour miserable Scot thing well hidden (lol) I did read that Lichen was a sign of good quality air, and yet it is only to be seen in our woodland area which is right beside the dual carriageway.

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