Changing Seasons ~ July’s The Time For Lady’s Bedstraw Up On Windmill Hill


So far July in the UK has featured several seasons. We’ve had April showers, autumnal gloom, wintery downpours, mutterings about frost that just never happens around here in July, and now a heat wave of unprecedented temperatures outside the tropics. Yet three evenings ago when  I took this photo, it felt like October. There was a wild windiness about the place, and lowering skies, and that pang of melancholy that tells you summer is done.

But then as I lay in the grass to frame the shot all I could smell was the mignonette fragrance of Lady’s Bedstraw. Delicate. Hypnotic; gathering in waves across the hilltop. I can well understand why these golden flower drifts were once harvested to dry and fill mattresses. Their scent says essence of high summer. And so it proved. The next morning Octoberal tendencies had evaporated and we woke to wall to wall blue, and the overwhelming hotness, beneath whose onslaught we are currently sweltering. All this climatic chopping and changing of course suits us English. We’ve never had so much weather to talk about all at once.

This photo, by the way, was taken in low evening light conditions using the  ‘Impressive Art’ setting on my Lumix. I’d rather dismissed this setting, not liking the results of shots taken in broad daylight. But in low light the images acquire an other-worldly look – perhaps slightly sinister. I only added a touch of ‘contrast’ and  ‘highlight’ editing.


Changing Seasons July2015

Please visit the Cardinal for more about this challenge. There are two versions: use one or both. The latest version 2 features a single image/creation that sums up the month for you in some way. Version 1 is a gallery of several photos – all to be freshly shot.



37 thoughts on “Changing Seasons ~ July’s The Time For Lady’s Bedstraw Up On Windmill Hill

  1. It’s bright and breezy down here, but the temps are going to plummet by next Tuesday and rain is forecast. rain, in winter! Crazy stuff.
    My brother in law was in France yesterday and he told us it was 36.
    That is a tad warm!

  2. Evocative shot – though not that familiar with lady’s bedstraw – will have to look round on the local chalk escarpments for it!

  3. Oh, yes that is a lovely shot, although I’m not so keen on the halo effect around the grasses and top of the windmill, funny how some art effects do that. Nice and fresh again down here, yesterday’s 28 degrees was far too warm to actually do anything. I guess we’ll be moaning about the rain again soon 😀

  4. ‘We have never had so much weather to talk about all at once’:) Oh I love that and how true it is……Today, I am painting with a fan directed towards me, which is actually quite pleasant…..Tomorrow I have to go out again, and so hopefully it will have cooled a little. Thanks, Tish…Janet:)

    1. We’re never ‘at home’ with our weather, whatever it’s doing. But yes, cool would be good. In fact here in Shropshire we suddenly have a very pleasant breeze.

  5. What a lovely post and blog in general. Happy to stumble scross you.

    Love your description of Ladys Bed Straw and the thought if a mattress filled with it!

    Must be climate change… All this mix of different climates and temperatures in such a short space of time. I like the thought of everyone having weather to discuss… Its so true though that when weather does not change much, there is not much to comment on. I grew up in South Africa, with very temperate and good weather – no one EVER discussed it, it wasalways lovely. End of conversation.


      1. You are welcome. I should have said more, as the photo really moved me. It made me feel a combination of excitement waiting for a storm, the calm of nature, and peace. Really. Hope that makes sense to you, and thank you.

  6. Happy mid-week, Tish. I’m imagining lying in the grass with the wonderful scent you described. Ahhhhh. I’m sure there’s a fat bee or two somewhere around and I’m feeling a bit sleepy.


    1. It’s very tempting to go back up Windmill Hill and lie around in the Bedstraw. The other morning when I was up there doing just that I nearly got coopted onto the Windmill Hill Trust Committee, so lying around on hillsides can have its downsides: prospect of minutes/meetings/agendas – Yikes! Happy Thursday, Janet

  7. Our weather even in winter is milder than in previous years. But if you go back enough you will get back to colder climes. Weather is cyclical. England had almost semi-tropical weather in the 16th-18th centuries and then things came back to normal. There is an increased period of sunspots and activity in the surface of the sun – maybe this affects the weather?

    1. You’re right. It’s easy to forget that the weather patterns have indeed changed over the centuries and aeons. They used to have vineyards up in N E Scotland in the Middle Ages – quite unimaginable now. At the moment it’s the jet stream that seems to be confusing things.

  8. Love that windmill! In every season.

    There’s usually a lot more weather around here. After the caterpillars stripped the trees, we’ve been awaiting the return of green to the woods. We now have green leaves on the oak trees, but they are the light yellow-green of sprint (with accompanying pollen). Plus heat and no rain at all. We have had a great many gray, humid days, but no measurable rainfall since May. Climate change is everywhere.

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