Apologies for the delay in the result!
If you wish to ‘have a go’ before knowing the result, please look back about two weeks ago to the original picture.
If you wish to know the answer, scroll down!
I’m a 50 year old non-smoker. I picked a still lit cigarette butt out of the gutter when I was six years old, tried it, hated it and never looked back. In my teens other teenagers never ever looked cool to me for smoking – and still don’t.
Recently I was speaking to another man in his 50s who dismissed all scientific evidence on the dangers of smoking. I pointed out that regardless, all he was doing was smoking leaf litter. Would he pick leaves off the ground, dry them, roll them up, put them in a bit of thin paper and smoke them? Nope!! That is all smokers are doing. Inhaling the smoke from leaf litter.
Anyway, I digress.
As a teenager in the 1970s, many teenagers copied those in their late teens and twenties and took up smoking. Thinking it looked cool. It never tasted good, so it must be the alternative, it was seen as cool to do it. They would stand or sit in groups usually, taking a long drag on a roll up or a filter. Look slightly up or down, drawing the smoke in slowly before exhaling the smoke up into the air, sometimes into ring shapes. Co-o-o-o-o-l……
I am a driver for a council. In our tea room recently, this is the type of conversation of other drivers along with mechanics on their E-cigarettes.
“What flavour is that?”
“This one is Blueberry and Apricot.”
“I’ve got Strawberry now, I didn’t like the Chocolate, didn’t taste right.”
It is funny to sit there listening to six foot fifteen stone men talking among themselves about E-cig flavourings.
I don’t know if E-cigs are healthier or, if not, are more likely to result in giving up smoking tobacco; ( I did ask if they came tobacco or nicotine flavoured, apparently they do, but they don’t want them ); but can anyone see younger generations emulating the older generations and taking up cherry cola flavour E-cigs, when there are sweets and drinks out there already in these flavours?
Perhaps this was the point all along, a cunning plan to halt the new generations of possible tobacco smokers in their tracks…. it’s not cool dudes!
Something occured to me recently about flowers, nectar and pollination. Once an insect takes the nectar from a flower, taking pollen with it; does the plant make more nectar and pollen for that particular flower? How often does that individual flower give more nectar and pollen for insects to take? Or does it happen just once?
It seems once the flower’s nectar has been taken, that is the end of that flower, there is no more. It dies. I had never thought of this before. I often see insect after insect visit the same flowers, but has there been anything for them to take? It seems, no. Once it is consumed, that is it.
However, we can help increase the flowering and therefore more nectar and pollen by deadheading dying flowers. This is a simple process of removing the dead flower heads, so that the plant will generate more flowers.
I have added a link here to the Royal Horticultural Society, which gives advice on such things.
You may like to visit your own countries version of the RHS, as plants will differ in times and systems of deadheading. But please look into this and do it as and when you have time. It is worthwhile.
Below are pictures I have managed to take of a few Dragonflies and Damselflies. At the moment they are mating and not really interested in their surroundings, so I have been able to take some nice photos.
But I have to say my favourite are the last four of a Hummingbird Hawkmoth feeding on Buddhleia. I couldn’t get any closer due to the ten feet of six feet high stinging nettles between us and the fact a bird is nesting at the back and I didn’t want to disturb the nest just for a pic.
With regards to my earlier post on Wind Turbines, I thought I would look up any research there is on the effect on marine life to their presence. The most definitive seems to be this report from Sweden. I personally have no problem with creating ‘Sea Forests’. However we create and use energy systems, it is going to impact on our environment and all living things. Our long term aim should be to continue along this road, improving our technology along the way to cause less environmental impact. The alternative is to suck our planet dry of fossil fuel and be left with nuclear energy until that too runs out.
Unfortunately, while we improve our clean energy technology, it is necessary to continue using fossil and nuclear fuel; and to make the most of shale gas.
if anyone knows of other reports like the one above, please add here.
Last year was a very poor year for fruiting trees and shrubs. Come winter time the wildlife had a serious uphill struggle to find food. This year looks like an abundant year for fruit. Here are a few pix of in no particular order, Blackberry, Raspberry, Rosehip, Apples, Blueberry, Hawberry, Cherry and others.