Last month’s Wildflower Wednesday had me clinging on to summer, and this month’s, with the benefit of a glorious morning, has me attempting to do the same.
The chamomile discussed at some length last month is going from strength to strength, but unexpectedly (did I really miss it last year?) it has been joined by a second flowering of the beautiful thrift. The thrift has also been discussed before, most comprehensively here, and whilst it’s lovely to see it again, the effect is quite different. The colouring has been diluted by both the white of the chamomile flowers, but also by the many thrift seed heads that are now a silvery, papery beige. The overall effect is less dramatic but somehow better suited to the season, which, however hard I try, can’t really still be called summer.
So this ‘between the seasons’ continues with this contrast of the wild carrot (Daucus carota) seed heads with the Sea Asters (Aster tripolium) still flowering well behind.
Elsewhere there is more evidence of ‘mellow fruitfulness’. Umpteen blackberries, here with the fruit of Black Bryony, (Dioscorea [or Tamus] communis)
and here with the seed heads of Old Man’s Beard, Clematis vitalba,
as well as rose hips
and Sea Buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides).
According to James Wong in his ‘Homegrown Revolution’ book Sea Buckthorn is a rich source of vitamins A, C and E and a ‘much-loved part of the cuisine of Scandinavia, Eastern Europe and China’. He suggests using it for jams, juices and liqueurs, but acknowledges that the berries are very soft skinned and therefore extremely messy to harvest. in Scandanavia and Eastern Europe, where they are grown commercially, they harvest whole branches and freeze them, and then knock the berries off once hard. Even if I thought it was appropriate to harvest whole branches, I just don’t have that kind of space in my freezer!
With many thanks, as ever, to Gail at Clay and Limestone for hosting Wildflower Wednesday.