Day 3 of the 30 days wild challenge dawned bright and sunny, a welcome change from the stormy weather of the first couple of days of the month. Today I decided to fit some wild time into the middle of my day.
I work close to Sutherland Grange, a green space next to a branch of the River Thames just outside Windsor, part of which is a local nature reserve. The 30dayswild challenge has been a prompt for me to look more carefully for local wild spaces to spend some time, this is just the first on my list.
Sutherland Grange is about a five minute drive from my office, so it’s easy to visit in a lunchtime, but despite this, I’ve never been there before today. As I walked from the layby and into the park I noticed purple mallow flowers and just inside the park a blue damselfly resting on a nettle. Inspired, I decided to try to photograph the rainbow full of colours as I wandered around the park. Here’s how I did:
I found red leaves emerging, only the newest ones were red, the rest had turned green and a ladybird perching in the sunshine.
Yellow buttercups and hawkweed growing in the rough grass and the centre of daisies in the short grass.
A beautiful green space to have discovered
The Purple mallow flowers that I spotted on the way in
I had to cheat for Orange-with a life ring
And finally, a Common Blue damselfly
Walking around the park I also spotted may flys that had recently emerged,
banded demoiselle on the wing, too flighty for me to capture a photo of in the short time I had available and a holly blue and large white butterfly fluttering by as I ate my sandwich. On the water there were a pair of great crested grebes,mallard drakes and moorhens. In a riverside willow a noisy family of great tits jumped from branch to branch, squabbling. There were beautiful patterns in the bark on a fallen tree, and a bracket fungus emerging from a trunk. In the rough grass there were so many different textures to see, I collected some of the different types of grass, for a nature diary.
I really appreciated my lunchtime burst of wildness, returning to the office with itchy eyes, but feeling invigorated. I’m looking forward to discovering more wild places near where I live and work during the rest of the 30dayswild challenge.