Wednesday 11 June 2014

Laburnums and Foxgloves and a walk up the hill

When I drove over the mynydd to see my friend last week, the Laburnums were out in full flower and absolutely STUNNING.

Originally - around WW1 I think, when ALL wood was in such demand for the trenches in France - farmers needing fencing post had to take what they were given. Laburnum was one of the few woods available, and duly put in as fencing.  However, it began growing and now countless fences hereabouts have grown into beautiful rows of Laburnum which is in full bloom at the present.

How beautiful is that?

Coming home - the top end of our beautiful wild valley.

A little cottage in the woods, with access only on foot.  OK until you have a week's shopping to carry there!  Or coal!

Today I went out for a slow walk up the hill (my legs were feeling tired, but I forced them to do some work.)  Here are some Foxgloves on the first bend.  There's an old saying about summer lasting as long as the Foxgloves flower (and the ones up in the mountains start much later).  Judging by these, autumn would be upon us in about 3 weeks!

Looking across the valley towards Llanfynydd.  You can just see the Italianate tower which is all that remains of the "Big House" there (now a holiday complex) - Pantglas.

Looking across the valley to the Towy Valley beyond.  I think the trees under the horizon are probably Grongar Hill, made famous in the poem by John Dyer.

Distant view of Dryslwyn castle from the steep stretch of hill.  I must have an evening walk up there again - the views along the Towy valley are stupendous.

The summer lands.  Wales is so beautiful at this time of year.  But then ALL countryside is beautiful in summer.

Top of the hill, by the bend, looking across to the Black Mountains.

The best of a walk UPHILL is that the lane home is DOWNHILL all the way!

And finally, my new walking jacket.  Foxglove-coloured.  Now you know why I was drawn to it!


  1. Blending in with the countryside!

  2. It all looks just gorgeous. i wish we had better weather for our stay in Wales, everything looked rather grey. I did like the lane down to our cottage, which was full of wild flowers and the azaleas that grow so well and in such amazing lipstick colours.

  3. Fabulous color of your new jacket, and I like the story of the laburnums and how farmers used them for fence posts and now you have a bounty of yellow to admire.

  4. You will be a walking foxglove! It`s a lovely colour :-)

    Such beautiful views from your walk. I have never seen so many laburnums growing in one place. Interesting that they started life as fence posts!

  5. Not sure if I've seen laburnums here--must do a search on them or refer to my southern gardening book--which is at the other house.
    I can't imagine foxglove in wild colonies--I've cherished and pampered my several plants grown from seed--must remember to collect some to share when it ripens.

    1. I fell asleep for a bit at daybreak after several frustrating hours of being awake. Of all things, I dreamed of driving through a village with a laburnum in every yard!

  6. What beautiful walk and flowers.
    The story about the fence posts is so interesting.
    Love the jacket that matches the flowers so well.

    cheers, parsnip

  7. That one of the top end of your valley is stunning. I do wish you'd use the 'extra large' setting for your makes such a difference. I've been noticing Laburnum much more this year. Do you think it's flowering particularly profusely or something? Last summer was pretty awful for everything after that freezing early spring. Love your jacket and it is definitely Foxglove! I bet that's not what the makers called it tell. xx

  8. Yes lovely colour the coat and a perfect match with the foxglove. Do wish Em would tell us where the 'extra large' setting is, there again I might be using a different setting on my blog...

  9. Foxglove colour indeed!
    I think this must be a very good year for laburnum flowers - I have never seen them in such splendour.

  10. Em - I can do extra large but it goes into the border with the blogs I visit. If no-one minds, I will use that in future. Some of the photos deserve to be BIG. I think the Laburnum probably came on slowly, and then a couple of warm days just makes it go BOOM!

    Pat - saw some more on our day out today, but not as stunning as the ones on Llanllwni.

    thelma - I shall be safe wearing that jacket - as long as I don't fall in a patch of foxgloves, where I could remain undiscovered for days!

    parsnip - glad you enjoyed. I LOVE my new jacket.

    Sharon - sorry to have put Laburnums in your dreams!

    DW and Terra - who would want a dull coloured jacket after seeing that one?

    Kath - ah, the Welsh weather. Yes it can be a pain at times, but on a GOOD day (like today) it is amazing. Where were you based in your holiday cottage?

    Smallholder - well, bits of it!!

  11. The new jacket is the most beautiful of colours :) Another lovely walk and such wonderful scenery. The laburnums are stunning :)

  12. You're right - it is absolutely stunning! What amazing scenery you live surrounded by. I've had a long break from blogging but am happy to be back and catching up on favorite blogs! Will look forward to reading about what's been happening in your world. I have just finished all six series of Doc Martin and have now added Cornwall to my bucket list along with Wales, Ireland, Scotland and the rest of England. I'd better hurry before I get any older. Hope all is well!


  13. RR - my only regret is that since I bought my rainproof, windproof, breathable, sealed-seam jacked - we have had days of SUNSHINE!!! I'm not complaining though : )

    Dianne - lovely to see you back. Oh, DO come and visit Britain. You will ADORE it, and I am certain Cornwall will capture your heart (along with everywhere else). Make it summer that you visit - arriving in very late Spring (May) and remembering that the further North you go, the longer the seasons take to arrive. So start in the south and work your way round : )

  14. Your part of the world is just so beautiful. I am coming to Monmouth next week!