This is a plant I have never noticed before. Like most people I have a tendency to see the big and showy or the well known favourites. Now, with the virus lockdown, with the leisure, less distraction, lack of agenda, wild things seem to pop up all the time, having been hidden in plain view. You can notice a lot in an hour of walking around your home once a day. The leaves and the small blue flowers here remind me of the herb Borage which I used to grow in my garden once upon a time when I had a proper garden. I used the flowers to decorate salads, and peeled the stems to put in cool summer drinks. The plant in the photographs is in fact a relative of borage. It is Green Alkanet. Completely new to me.

11 Replies to “Daily Walk in Difficult Times 19”

  1. Yes, excellent pictures of Alkanet. This is a Victorian bedding plant gone native. It grew like a weed in my former old house together with Borage which the bees love. The flowers of Borage have a curious effect when taken with red wine. It’s the drink of amour !
    Robert not a Coconut.

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  2. Thank you, Yvonne. One of my other reader’s tells me that it is a garden escape. It was a popular bedding plant in the 19th century. I guess that is why it is in your garden, and in the grounds of this old Victorian hospital in Charlton Down. I have posted some pictures of forget-me-nots in today’s post for comparison with the Green Alkanet.


  3. Thank you, Robert. That is useful information! The grounds that I walk in each day during this coronavirus lockdown were the gardens of the converted Victorian hospital building in which I now live. The Green Alkanet was probably grown as a bedding plant back in the late 19th century and is now part of the free-living flora.


  4. Thank you, Claudia. It is a kinder way of putting it than ‘I must have been blind not to see it before’. It is growing in a wilder part of a steep bank that is smothered in primroses, violets, and dandelions.


  5. My theory on this kind of thing comes from what happens to me in art work making – I look over my array of colors or papers, I am looking at the whole thing, and suddenly one piece or tube of paint seems to gleam out at me, saying: look! and it’s just what I needed right then. (Other times , they hide and show up later when I’ve made another choice, but that is another story). I see this experience the same – one day, all conditions were right for the connection. The overall situation it was in sounds just so beautiful. I’m enjoying imagining it.

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  6. That’s just how it is sometimes, Claudia. One of life’s mysteries. The location for the flowers is indeed spectacular and on a steep bank by the roadside in the centre of the village.

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