Sunday, 3 June 2018

What's in a name?/ A rose by any other name would smell as sweet...


It's early Sunday morning at the end of half term week so time for another blog post.  I've had a relaxing half term catching up with garden and household tasks as well as having a couple of good evenings out with friends. The weather has been warm and sunny mostly with the occasional heavy downpour.  I don't mind this really as it saves me watering the garden.

I have also attempted a bit of training for the Race for Life event which Kate and I have signed up for.  Now I am no runner, nor is she but we both could do with improving our fitness so I thought preparing for this event would give us a bit of motivation as well as raising some money for cancer research.  So I downloaded the Couch to 5K app and have been out jogging/walking alternately on the cycle path several days this week, listening to the encouraging words of Michael Johnson, my chosen personal trainer  It starts at a fairly easy pace so  I have coped - might be a bit more challenging when the ratio of running to walking changes.  Kate can't be persuaded away from her books to join me but I hope she will when exams finish.

It's very pleasant jogging on the cycle path at present as the wild flowers are in full bloom - glossy buttercups, big daisies, cow parsley and, my favourite, the dog roses.   I was wondering why they are called dog roses so I looked it up.  It's a translation form the Latin name, Rosa Canina and it was given that name because the root was originally a remedy against the bite of a mad dog.  Kate considers my fascination with wild flowers and their names very amusing.  It goes back to my primary school years when my favourite topic was 'nature study'  - we'd escape the classroom and go out collecting flowers which we would then press in heavy books and stick into our nature study books, I remember random facts about primroses like how there are male and female ones and how to identify primrose gender.  I wonder if any of the kids I teach will remember any of things I have taught them in forty years time?  Perhaps they'll still know that the quotation above is from 'Romeo and Juliet'.
Manley Knoll Quarry Garden

I am also enjoying visiting gardens which are open for charity through the National Garden Scheme, dragging anyone who I can find available to come with me.  Husband not a keen gardener and usually half way up a mountain on a bike on Sunday mornings so I persuaded one of my friends to come along with me.  Last week's garden was spectacular - Manley Knoll which is owned by the Timpson family (shoe repairs etc). The garden was built around an old quarry and is full of woodland plants.  There were lots of rhododendrons in bloom which was very impressive, though I am not at all keen on them - I have a rather garish purple one in my garden. They were serving teas in old china cups and huge hunks of homemade cake - we shared a piece of coffee and walnut.

And there's plenty more gardens to visit in the months ahead.

1 comment:

  1. Good luck with your running training! I was always wondering why dog roses are called that (not enough to look it up myself). Interesting. I assume mad do refers to rabies? Not much a root could do in this case but maybe it was not rabies, which I don't think was ever present in dogs in the UK. I am a bit obsessed with rabies, sorry. Such a fascinating virus.

    I love to be able to name wildflowers, birds, trees etc. My children think it is a bit eccentric but I don't care. Have a lovely week, hopefully not too hectic. x

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