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Posts Tagged ‘winter’

Vintage: I was thinking of clothing or cars until I read an article by William Gibson and he referred to vintage science fiction – I realised I had some on my shelves. These covers from Fantastic in 1959 and 1977 showed how little changed until comparatively recently – both covers depict attractive women as victims of alien terror… Click on the picture to read the William Gibson interview in the Guardian

Last month I signed up for the Winter Photography Scavenger Hunt hosted by Eileen on her A Bracelet of Days blog. Here’s her introduction to the hunt. (more…)

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I stood here: The sculpture ‘People Like Us’ by John Clinch in Mermaid Quay represents the people of Tiger Bay in the days when this was a thriving port – when I stood here I didn’t notice I had framed the Norwegian Church in the background

I have absolutely no imagination, so to try to kick-start my thinking I have decided to join in with the Winter Photography Scavenger Hunt hosted by Eileen on her A Bracelet of Days blog. Here’s her introduction to the hunt. (more…)

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Looking across the Wharf on Christmas Eve, with golden willow leaves in the foreground

It seems a long time ago now, but on Christmas Eve I went for my regular walk around the Wharf (former Bute East Dock) alongside my workplace at County Hall in Cardiff Bay. Although it is the middle of winter there was still plenty to see… (more…)

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Ripening fruit seen during my walk around the Wharf (former Bute East Dock) in Cardiff on November 20 – I have been calling this dogwood (Cornus sanguinea) but I am still not totally convinced

It has now become my habit to go for a walk around the Wharf (former Bute East Dock) at least once a month to document the plants. The darker days are here but I am still finding plenty in nature to brighten my day.

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Mahonia is one of my favourite winter plants…

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Robin (Erithacus rubecula) in the snow yesterday

We had serious snow here in Cardiff on Thursday and Friday – so bad that I was sent home from work at lunchtime on Thursday after a Red Warning was issued. Only a couple of us remembered it was St David’s Day (March 1), a day for daffodils.

Then on Friday I was really frustrated that I couldn’t get into work, after boasting that of course I would be there – I was sure the snow wouldn’t be as bad as they were forecasting. But it was and no buses were running in the city. If I had walked it would have taken me a couple of dangerous hours and I would have been sent straight back home again as soon as I arrived.

So instead I got some housework done, watched some TV and tried to capture the birds outside the kitchen window. We always put out fat blocks and pellets and sunflower seeds and every morning I throw out a couple of handfuls of raisins for the blackbirds, which are always there waiting. We have up to seven or eight of them on a good day. (more…)

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Clematis vitalba or old man’s beard beside Blackweir Bridge – I had never noticed how lovely the seeds were before

The other day after lunch with an old friend I decided to walk back from Cardiff city centre to Pontcanna Fields over Blackweir Bridge, as I hadn’t been there for decades. My hour-long ramble started in Bute Park and took me to areas I had sometimes wondered about as I viewed them from the path on the opposite side of the River Taff. (more…)

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Frosted oak leaves on January 3, 2017

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Before I turn my attention to a new tree to follow in 2017, I am looking back with fondness at the old oak (Quercus robur) I have followed throughout 2016 in Thompson’s Park, Cardiff.

I visited again on a frosty day last week but now it’s winter there is not going to be much change until it starts the annual cycle again in spring.

The only new observation was this spent firework from the New Year’s Eve festivities…

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Firework shell under the oak on January 3, 2017

So here is a comparison of how the tree looked as the months passed in 2016. (more…)

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Robin (Erithacus rubecula) at Dunraven on Christmas Day 2016

When it’s fine on Christmas Day we often go to Dunraven Castle at Southerndown in the Vale of Glamorgan to eat pâté and pickle sandwiches in the walled garden – our main meal of roast beef and Brussels sprouts is in the evening. This year the weather was good, with a cold, brisk wind that kept the cloudy sky interesting. (more…)

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Lush leaf of bear’s breeches (Acanthus mollis) in December

At the beginning of 2016 I promised myself I would keep an eye on Thompson’s Park in Cardiff as the seasons changed through the year, so I have just enough time before Christmas to fit in a snapshot of the park as we pass from late autumn into early winter.

I took these pictures on November 25 and December 9 and in just a fortnight almost the last of the autumn leaves fell. Some berries and seeds remain and there are a few winter blossoms. Please let me know if I have misidentified anything… (more…)

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A London plane (Platanus x hispanica) in Bute Park, Cardiff, in January

Last year I kept track of a hornbeam in Llandaff Fields in Cardiff, as part of Lucy Corrander’s wonderful tree following project, revisiting it every month and totally falling in love with the specimen that chose me. In January I have been searching for a new tree for 2015.

While Llandaff Fields are full of more-or-less native species, the Bute Park Arboretum in the centre of Cardiff, behind the castle, has many exotics alongside some champion native trees. I decided to explore, as I don’t know the park very well at all.

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