A delightful walk for us is through the field opposite our house. It is the site of a deserted village but all you can see are humps and hollows. There would have been buildings, track ways and also carp ponds to provide protein in the winter. I don’t know if the plague or enclosures meant the village disappeared.
We don’t take the dog in the field when the sheep and lambs are in there so go along the bridle path by the side of the field as far as the lake. Constructed at least 20 years ago it is now really established with bulrushes and reeds round the edge as nesting places for water birds. It used to be really overgrown, with bramble, nettles and bindweed. I know these are wild plants and habitats and food sources for wildlife but a very restricted range.
The landowner has mown a ride down one side and planted wild flower s which are lovely in late July and early August. An artist’s palette of purple, yellow, pink and white, knapweed, birds foot trefoil, vetch and mallow. A great favourite with bees and butterflies so there is plenty to see. Now they have gone to seed but are being left to wind scatter and spread. The last to flower is the chicory which I think provides a root which is used as a coffee substitute. The chicory is as tall or taller than me which I know is not saying much as I am only 5’ 3”. The branches emerge from a rosette of really coarse leaves like dandelion leaves The flowers look like dandelions too arranged along branching stems but in a lovely pure blue. Like bits of sky fallen to earth that have been picked up and stuck on bare branches as a craft project. I wonder if birds like the seeds and if so which birds. I must look it up.