Monday, 27 May 2013

Minnowburn Beeches.

We've been to Minnowburn Beeches quite a few times and walked towards Shaw's Bridge but this walk was new to us. In the car park there was a van selling coffee and slices of pizza. It was tempting.

The beech tree was just opening it's leaves.

Red Campion

We followed the signs to the Rose Garden passing the Wildlife Pond on the way.
Our climb took us up to this, The Terrace Hill Garden Project.

The flower beds had been cleared and were very dry.

This was the view from outside the walls of the Rose Garden looking across to Malone House.

There's a steep drop down but it wasn't stopping some young children exploring.
 I was a bit worried about them!

                                                            The bluebells were out.

We walked from the Terraced Garden down the drive to this gate, it reminded me of this.
My photo doesn't show the bluebells but they were growing on the bank.

Over a stile and there was a sign in the field.

On we walked, around the edge of this field and on to the Giants Ring.

Past this ploughed field and on to the sycamore tree.

 Buttercups and bluebells were growing all around the edge of the Giants Ring.

Back to the gate and there was a path we couldn't resist exploring - with cow parsley nearly as tall as us.


                                           I liked how the roots of these trees were growing....

and this inquisitive calf came to see us. 

I don't know how we've missed finding this walk but we'll be back and I'm looking forward to seeing the Terraced Garden restored to it's former beauty.

Monday, 20 May 2013

A day out at the Balmoral Show.

I've wanted to go to the Balmoral Show for years. It's got all the things I like. I should've married a farmer!
Now it's being held in a new venue and we decided to go and see what it was like.

Friday was a lovely sunny day, still a bit cold but just right for the Clysedale horses.

This horse was keeping an eye on the judge.

Up in the stands and I was envious of this man's skills. His drawing of a horse was amazing.

The Sheep Dog Trial demonstration began, I used to always watch 'One Man And his Dog' on TV.

Allistair Lyttle and Spot won OMAHD in 2010.  On Friday he was here with his dogs and they were brilliant at herding the sheep.

I liked this sheep. Lovely curly wool for dyeing and felting!

This was a mischievous pig that tried to escape....

... and a very proud hen showing off her egg.

You'd think this cockerel would be proud winning 1st Prize but he just looked fed up with the whole thing.

This bird was making a bid for freedom!

The 'Poultry and Eggs' were my favourite part of the show.

I had a look in the WI tent at the flower arrangements, baking, art & crafts.
This fabric cake really took my eye!

Then there was the fairground with rides as high as the sky.


Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Moira and some wild flower spotting.

We parked at Moira Station. This picture belies how the weather really was. We braved a very cold and blustery wind with frequent heavy showers on our walk - but it was worth it to see the wee cygnets.

There were 6 of them with their proud parents.

I'm still on the hunt - trying to identify some new wild flowers. I haven't seen this before but I think it is called Alexanders.

Common Forget-me-not. 

Charlock- or is it Black mustard - not sure.

Cabbage Thistle.

Red Dead Nettle


Herb Robert.

Grape Hyacinth - growing wild but close to the station.

Are these Indian Runner ducks?

The weather changed from this...

to this....

The ducks got caught in it!

This is Ramson with it's characteristic garlic smell.

Lords and Ladies.

Ribwort Plantain.

Cow Parsley.

Common vetch.

Garlic mustard.

So a good day of wild flower spotting...

... but this was my fave pic of the day.  I take all my pictures with a LITTLE Canon IXUS 100.