The Golden Bough

The Golden Bough

Mistletoe in flower, so I finally got why it has a poetic description as the “Golden Bough”

The Golden Bough

Last year’s berries were still there, and didn’t seem to have shrivelled.

The Golden Bough

As far as I know, the nearest mistletoe to Wolverhampton grows near to the centre of Coventry. These plants were a bit further away than that, in the garden of Anne Hathaway’s cottage at Shottery.

The Golden Bough

The Golden Bough

The Golden Bough

Bee on blackthorn blossom

Bee on blackthorn blossom

Taken a few days earlier than the previous picture, but just outside Stratford upon Avon. The season was much more advanced by travelling somewhat to the south.

Blackthorn budding

Blackthorn budding

The buds just beginning to swell on one of the blackthorn bushes on the edge of Barley Field in the Smestow Valley LNR towards the end of March.

Male and female pussy willow catkins

Male pussy willow catkin with pollen

Male and female catkins grow on different trees. The male ones start off looking furry, and give the species its name, before producing the pollen and turning as in the upper picture.

Female pussy willow catkin

The catkins on the female trees will eventually become the seeds.

Unidentified fungus on a tree stump

Unidentified fungus

From a distance it looked like a couple of miniature boulders; closer, the fungus seemed rather dried up as it grew on the cut surface of the stump of a large tree by one of the footpaths on the Perton estate.

Comma butterfly on nettles

Comma butterfly on nettle

A lot of butterflies were around during the warm spell at the end of March. This comma spent some time warming itself resting in the middle of a small bed of nettles.

Comma butterfly on nettle

Comma butterfly on nettle