Three foxgloves. First in Greece, Digitalis lanata; then ours, D. Purpurea; then in the Alps, in Slovenia, D. lutea. I was delighted when I found the greek one – who would have thought a brown flower could be so beautiful? – and I love the alpine one too, but then I thought, if all you’d ever seen were brown and pale yellow ones and then you saw the pinky purple ones, growing here on Cornish cliff tops, the colour somehow more intense in the mist, you would say wow! That’s the best one yet!

I do have a tendency to overlook and not recognise our native flora. The word native puts me off for a start.


Here’s another favourite, also from Slovenia, an orchid which loves mountain woodland and thrives inconspicuously even in deep shade, though this one was right by the edge of a road. It’s called Epipactis atrorubens. We call it a helleborine. Its colours are variable, I love the blend of green and purple on this one.

I’m feeling nostalgic for the mountains. This photo had already appeared earlier, in a post about the Gasterntal, in Switzerland, but I thought it was worth showing again. I’ve seen this orchid also in nature reserve in Kent, where it had a little wire cage around it.

Orchis ustulata in the Gasterntal, Switzerland
A forget me not, but not as we renember them. There’s sonething about delicate flowers in the mist, cool colours, white limestone

But I must remember to choose pictures in portrait mode; they appear much bigger on the screen

Like this, a gentian on the way to the Lotschepass, Switzerland.
Aquilegia in the Gasterntal
Lizard orchid by the roadside near Mount Olympus

That’s all for now

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3 Responses to Foxgloves

  1. Myna says:

    funny to find this about foxgloves. A few hours ago I brought home a foxglove (the native pink sort) from the allotment and planted it into the garden. What is all this about native and foreign plants. Yesterday we read a hand-written notice apologising that some wild flower seed that had been sown in a community garden had some foreigners in it but we were reassured that they’d be rooted out in the spring. the orchis ustulata is well worth showing again in its green mist.

  2. Jo Ryan says:

    Lovely to see all those foxgloves and other photos on a grey Monday morning! Thanks.

  3. Judy says:

    beautiful photo of the orchis ustulata in the rain. and those lizard orchids look more like dragonflies…

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