It’s been the warmest day of the year so far. My car dashboard recorded 23C (74F) for the first time this year. And it’s been dry, we’ve had so little rain of late that the grass is beginning to brown; something that doesn’t usually happen until July or August if then.

I got home a little early and needed some thinking time so I took myself off for a bit of a walk. I’m lucky to live right on the very edge of the city (but still 30 minutes from the city centre) and within a couple of minutes I’m out in the lanes on the surrounding farmland.

I found some Forget-Me-Nots. These tiny flowers have lilac buds but, as they open, they turn this bright shade of blue with yellow centres. The mythical story about the name is interesting. Two lovers were walking along the banks of the River Danube. The lady saw the flowers. Her boyfriend, while picking her a posy of the flowers, fell into the river. As he was swept away he called ‘Forget me not!’

These flowers with their umbrellas of tiny white flowers are everywhere at the moment along the edges of fields. They are called Cow Parsley because of the leaves. Or Queen Ann’s Lace after the intricacy and delicacy of the flowers. Or, if you like your stories darker, Mother Die, as they are supposed to bring bad luck into your home if you cut some and take them inside.

I found some wild roses. Apart from the one in our garden, these usually come out before the cultivars we have in our parks and gardens. The genes of this simple plant are in all of the complicated ones we like to grow. This one is white, the flower of the County of Yorkshire, but on the wrong side of the border. In spite of roses being the flower of England and very much entwined in our history and culture, they are not natives. They were brought here by the Romans to decorate their gardens. From there they escaped into the wild.

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