a floral alphabet ~ blossom foraging
Before I even get started, and before you even dream of asking, no and yes. No, I will not tell you where this beautiful blossom came from. And yes, this is possibly because I may feel the need to prune the tree just a little bit more. And no, I don’t wish to incriminate my partner in crime or she will never come on another foraging expedition with me ever again. And yes, I was the one who encouraged her. No, funnily enough, she didn’t need much encouragement – in fact I think she is quite ‘practiced in the art of foraging’. (She had a special foraging bag, with a secret waterproof lining & secateurs pocket!)
Of course the blossom did not come from the Botanical Gardens – crikey I was too scared to even think about picking a little sprig of daphne amongst all those other would-be forager spotters and cctv cameras. (Are there actual cameras? It could be useful to know!) Although I confess to gazing long and longingly at the hellebores, which are spectacular, and plentiful and were calling to me and I’m sure, were desperate to succumb to my secateurs – which I just happened to have on me. But – I couldn’t do it – not one single solitary twiglet or leaf or petal left those gardens with me! Or my friend.
No, our little blossom tree was all alone. Neglected and vine-covered. And certainly not in anyone’s garden. And not in a public garden either. So, beautifully ripe for the picking you might say. Certainly beautiful.
Bruno was our patsy. Under cover of a dog walk we meandered by. A few furtive glances and a few quick snips and we had a few little stems for our vases. The special foraging bag was useless – we weren’t going to risk damaging our precious little flowers by trying to quickly hide them in a bag. We had to perfect the nonchalant ‘I always go for a walk with blossom’ walk. This was not aided by Bruno needing a toilet stop not far from said tree. Poor timing on his part we thought. And then it was the nonchalant walk with the poo bag, which, as other dog owners will appreciate, is never nonchalant!
I think I am not a very good forager. It’s different on the roadside in the country, or a bit of ivy from up in front of the monastery (oops, did I say that!) But, urban roadside feels very… urban. Previous experience has taught me that the targeted flower will not leave the bush willingly, that it isn’t good to pull out the entire bush in pursuit of the flower in question, and that if you think the world is watching, it probably is. Walk on.
In this special case, was it worth all the furtive snips and residual guilt? Well, I think so.
(photos & styling Amanda Holland for perfectly imperfect living)