True Wild daffodils are only now found in a restricted number of woods, mainly in the west of the country. It is an indicator of ancient woodland and grassland, often found growing with plants such as Dog’s mercury, wood anemone, Primrose, Cowslip, Lesser celandine, Ivy, and violets. Continue reading →
It’s been a slightly off month so far, phenology wise. The weatherfolk tell us that this Spring has been relatively sunny, dry and warm. I don’t doubt them and their instruments, but feel that this doesn’t tell the whole story – which also needs to encompass ‘cold nights’. Continue reading →
On Saturday I led another nature walk around Hillhouse wood. At least with most of the ‘action’ centring on flowers I knew that there would be something to see – they can’t run, slither, swim or fly away. Continue reading →
After a day spent checking the database we’re using for the Android version of the Naturetale app I was ready to start crawling up walls – which isn’t easy when you’ve turned your brain to scrambled mincemeat. Despite the gloomy and threatening clouds some fresh air was called for. Although it was only five days since my last Track a tree field visit, the way spring is springing at the moment provided a perfect excuse to get out. Who knows – the Nightingales might be early. Continue reading →
I’ve already had a moan about the ‘challenging’ tendencies of certain flowers to refuse to stick to our identification ‘rules’, in which I mentioned some of the ways they achieve this. But what are the flowers we’ve found (so far) who are playing these tricks? Continue reading →
In my spare time (ha ha) I am involved with the management of a local wood. This is owned by The Woodland Trust, but has a group of local volunteers who do much of the practical work. A highlight of the wood is its display of Bluebells (it featured in The Times’ recent list of ten great woods to visit), and each spring we organise guided walks to show people what the wood has to offer. Since the recent sad demise of local wildlife expert Joe Firmin I have stepped in as a very inadequate replacement. I used some of the information we’ve collated for the app to add a little extra interest to what I was able to tell people.
Many books have been written about how to innovate, to come up with ideas for new products and new businesses. And probably many more pounds have been spent by companies on consultants to run innovations sessions, workshops et al. Quite a bit of it wasted (I write as a former participant).
Ironically the irksome messiness of real life means that great new ideas cannot be programmed with certainty, or generated to order.
The genesis of Naturetale is a case in point; an illustration of how serendipity does its work when and where it chooses. Continue reading →