I always seem to be running late. This time I`m a week behind Mother Nature as the crab apple blossoms have fallen now and hawthorn blossom is taking its place in the field hedgerows and out on the Forest.
Here is the best of our ornamental crab apples, in photos taken last week. An old tree now but this year it produced more blossom than it has for several springs. It was beautiful in bright sunshine and even lovelier in moonlight.
The rest of the garden seemed to be at its best in brights pinks.
New, lime green leaves of Philadelphus aureus contrasted well with the dark green leaves of rhodedendrons.
Mysembreanthemums smiling at the sun. I loved these as a child so I planted some for our little granddaughter.
Out on the green at the foot of Stonechat Hill, the wilding apple blossoms were a more delicate shade of pink and were attracting honey bees.
The old rowan tree was a mass of frothy cream blossoms.
The gorse blossom is almost over now, but this year has been the best for a long time. For weeks,the New Forest heathlands have been dazzling with acres of yellow gold. The air has been full of the warm scent of coconut and the hum of visiting bees.
The larger native trees were in new leaf last week. Behind the wilding apples grow oak, silver birch and beech on the hill slopes.
A mature ash just coming into leaf.
The undergrowth has been rich with new grass. Food for the Forest ponies, cattle and deer.
Within weeks, the grass will be overshadowed by bracken once again. Already, its new shoots can be seen curling out of the earth and its stems, coiled like rams horns, are unfurling and growing to make a canopy across the hillside and the heath.