Slow Sloes

Hawthorn coming into leaf
Hawthorn coming into leaf

There’s one stretch of hedge that The Dog and I walk past often – last autumn patches of it were decorated with the black lustre of sloes. I’d assumed that spring would be heralded in with blackthorn flowers.
Blackthorn is one of the early bird plants (if you don’t count cherry plum and I think we’re too far north for them) flashing its white flowers blatantly before any of the rest wake up. A bit like those irritating people who get up early and then rattle and clatter round the house to make sure that no one else can get any sleep.
Not only is there no sign of blackthorn flowers yet but there’s a hawthorn bush – in a sheltered spot admittedly – that is well on its way to leaf-dom. The blackthorn flowers usually beat the hawthorn by a good few weeks – it looks like we’ve got a dozy lot of slow sloes here.

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