Wall to Wall Poppies In Wenlock


I spotted the blood red field across the town from Windmill Hill on Midsummer’s Eve. Yesterday at sunset, I gave up picking field beans and strawberries at the allotment, and went to seek it out. After a dull afternoon and early evening, the sun suddenly put in an appearance and I surmised it would be shining right on the poppies, and it was.

What a glorious sight. I have never seen such a profusion of scarlet heads, pushing their way up through the ripening stems of oil seed rape.


Of course the question I ask myself – is this happenstance or has someone gone in for some guerrilla gardening on an epic scale? Either way, it cannot be rivalled as a piece of earth art. And of course with the hundred year anniversary of the Battle of the Somme upon us, it strikes other chords – the pointless waste of so much promise; of so many brave young men.  Today, too, just over half of the British voting public opted to leave the Europe Union, one of whose founding objectives was the avoidance of another European conflict. I feel very sad about this outcome. I think change can be best effected by participation and engagement from within. In fact we Farrells were so fed up this afternoon we had to visit the poppy field once more to cheer ourselves up.

So here’s to poppy power and creative cultivation. A potent beautiful force.

51 thoughts on “Wall to Wall Poppies In Wenlock

  1. Oh Tish these photos make me so happy! The first time i saw fields like this was on our first cycling trip to Italy. I practically drove off the road. 🙂

  2. Beautiful images Tish. I have watched the whole Brexit thing with a sense of disbelief. Like you, the principle of unity to avoid conflict has been in my mind, and I’m stunned that it didn’t seem to have occurred to others I spoke to. Mind you, in my little spot of Pacific isolation, it hasn’t been a huge news event — until yesterday.

    1. I’m not convinced that people here were so much voting out of the EU, as hitting back at our own government that has left them and their communities stranded for decades, and then piled austerity measures on top. A lot of misconceptions were peddled by politicians on both sides of ‘the debate’ and there was little appraisal of what the EU has done for Britain quite apart from trade – trying to improve workers’ rights and working conditions for one; investing in a vast amount of infra-structure and development, especially in rural Wales; getting us to clean up our filthy sewer polluted beaches; pressing for Big Corp to pay its taxes, subsidising farming and the re-planting of wildlife areas…That said, the organisation itself could do with a very thorough shake-up admin-wise.

      1. Yes; it does seem that people either didn’t know, or forgot, how much the UK has benefitted from EU membership. Brussels is unwieldy if not actually corrupt, but it won’t be changed by countries on the outside.

  3. I love poppies. State flower of California, you know. The California poppies are orange and they can proliferate like your red ones there. Just beautiful!

    1. Californian poppies are gorgeous too. As a species they cannot be beaten, can they – from the chunky oriental ones to the delicate Icelandic ones. Oh yes and the Himalayan blues…

  4. Beautiful. I love the lonely tree in the middle of the field in the second shot. Perhaps it expresses some of your feelings about Brexit.:)

    1. As I said I could glimpse these red ones through the trees from the other side of the town. They’re almost more dramatic from a distance: red fields where they’ve never been before! White ones would be very soothing though.

    1. I tried to get some field poppies like these to grow along our fence boundary with the field, but they weren’t having it. I think poppies like to do their own thing.

      1. I planted seeds a few times this year. They grew in but straggly. Not too many flowers. I still have more seeds, so wait’ll next year.

      2. I seem to remember fall sowing was the best thing to do, and the seeds scattered rather than covered in soil. You could try that too perhaps.

  5. This sight makes me feel ecstatic, and I’m not even there! A sort of antidote to brexit. Your analysis was very clear and made a lot of sense. Knowing all you dwellers in England-and-the-blogosphere has made me a lot more interested in and agitated by this outcome.

    1. There’s going to be so much unforeseen unravelling – and in all parts of our lives, and indeed in our now Ununited Kingdom. We can’t even say United Kingdom any more. Who would have ever thought it!

  6. Breathtaking! We saw a glimpse of this field on the way to Entertaining Elephants and went into ecstasies. Or I did. Dave isn’t prone to go into ecstasy about anything. Much. I presume it’s a man thing. Thanks to your effort to capture this glorious scene and your photographic skill, I can enjoy them in full, as it were. Such an antidote to the post-referendum gloom.

    1. Glad to provide some poppies, Kate. More antidote is needed too as events unfold. What a stupid situation. Have you seen the Guardian article about the EU funded town in Ebbw Vale where 60% voted leave despite surrounded by massive and wonderful EU provided facilities? 29,000 apprenticeships funded in the region…Duh!

  7. You said it – what a glorious sight! I wish I could be there to see it.
    So sad about the EU vote. I have a small hope that there will be another referendum since the results of this one don’t seem to have been all that well received. From what I’ve read I think that if they held another vote today the result would be reversed.
    Love your photographs – gorgeous. You really captured it.

    1. Thanks for those thoughts, Alison. There is certainly a petition calling for another vote. It had well over a million signatories yesterday. Fingers crossed.

  8. Quite fitting too as symbols of huge sacrifices made to protect our democracy and freedom. Trouble is, this country seems to be deeply fractured by the differing views of what exactly democracy and freedom
    really means. We need fresh hope, so I will cling to the thought that the field of poppies can also symbolise new growth.

  9. Very nicely said my dear. I know that poppies have a particular meaning and symbolism for anglo-saxons. In french it is just a lovely old song: “Gentil coquelicot, mesdames”. 🙂

  10. That first photo is absolutely stunning Tish, the contrast of the overcast sky makes the poppies just glow. I would love to have a LARGE poster of this image as it would make me feel that all is well in the world (even when it isn’t) I have a friend in UK that I went to school with and she tells me how you are all reeling with the Brexit decision.

    1. Reeling from Brexit indeed, Pauline. And if you have the means to make a poster of the photo, please do. We all need lovely things to look at to keep the spirits up.

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