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The Breamish Valley

A picturesque landscape of high hills, open moorland, gently rolling farmland and the scenic River Breamish!

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Wild and Well

Wild and Well: Nature Connection, Wellbeing and Meaning in Life

Readers may recall that in May 2020 Michael Wilson undertook a study of ‘nature connectedness and meaning in life‘ in the Northumberland National Park.

Among other findings, the research showed that green areas with rich biodiversity provide numerous opportunities to help people who connect with nature to make meaning in life. Consequently, any depletion of natural settings would diminish the benefits that these green spaces provide.

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Musk Mallow

Gentle perfume of the musk mallow

When is a plant a weed? When is a weed a flower to enjoy? I guess it’s all about context. There are lots of flowers that we can see growing in our hedgerows and along field margins that, if transplanted to a garden, would be considered a ‘flower’.

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Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

Long time passing?

According to Pete Seeger’s 1955 political folk song, the answer to the question ‘Where have all the flower’s gone? is ‘Young girls have picked them everyone.’ Well, they’d have to have been very busy along the Breamish Valley to account for the ‘disappearance’ of the monkey-flower Mimulus.

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Lady’s Bedstraw

Lady’s Bedstraw – Galium verum

Flowering from June -September, this annual perennial can now be seen carpeting the hedge banks and, in particular, the roadside verges along the Breamish Valley. It grows about 30cm tall and, belonging to the Rubiaceae family, it has distinctive whorled leaves. Whorled leaves are three or more leaves all growing from a single node on a stem (compare it to, for example, ‘opposite leaves’ where just two leaves grow opposite each other on a stem). Lady’s bedstraw can have 8-12 leaves growing in a whorl.

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