Sunday, 3 May 2009

A Glimpse of the Mersey Valley 50 years ago - Hilda Broady's Journal

3rd May 1959

Another fine cold day, with no sun, but a clear sky.
The tree is now in full leaf, and many of the seedlings are in leaf, about a quarter of the plot is covered in sycamore seedlings.
The grass is growing rapidly and has in creased in height.
Bluebells are in flower.

What strikes me, in 2009, is the relative 'sparseness' of these early journal entries, particularly in contrast to the flowery scene that greeted me when I visited Barlow Wood last week. I think that there are three possible reasons for this:

- The possibility that the season was noticeably less advanced 50 years ago (global warming and all that) and many of the plants that I saw flowering last Monday were only still in bud in Mrs Broady's day.

- The wood was more sparsely vegetated in 1959, possibly because it was not yet fenced-off and had been extensively trampled over the previous few decades.

- Mrs Broady was a beginner and was still learning the names of the plants that she found. Being a careful and thorough observer she preferred not to commit herself in print until she was sure of the identities of her specimens.


Posted by Dave Bishop, May 2009

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