Editor’s Diary: Wonderful Wildflowers

This week’s Editor’s Diary was inspired by a recent lunchtime walk.

My usual route takes me along the south shores of the River Tay. There’s always something to see – ducks on the water, boats bobbing on their moorings, dogs dashing excitedly about. It’s always a tonic in the middle of a working day.

And this time was no different.

The sky was blue, the birds were singing and suddenly, there seemed to be a profusion of wildflowers in bloom.

Huge fat bumble bees were enjoying the dandelions in flower by the side of the path. Marsh marigolds were already in bloom in the little burn that feeds into the Tay.

This lovely yellow flower is also known as “kingcup”, which seems especially appropriate given the impending royal event next month!

But my favourite early wildflower is the delicate cuckoo flower.

I couldn’t resist crouching down to take my picture of them in the foreground, fringing the river and its boats.

My “Pocket Guide To Wildflowers” tells me that the pretty pale pink cuckoo flower is actually a member of the mustard family.

It’s also known as Lady’s Smock, and likes to grow in damp, grassy places throughout the British Isles and Europe. Which explains why it’s so plentiful in Scotland – no shortage of damp places here!

Interesting as that is, however, it doesn’t tell me why it’s called cuckoo flower.

Thankfully, I found the answer on the internet! This little flower is so named because it first appears in April, at the same time as the arrival of the first cuckoos of spring.

I’ve never seen or heard a cuckoo in my part of Fife, but I will keep looking!

Read more of Angela’s Editor’s Diary entries.

Angela Gilchrist

Angela is Former Editor-in-Chief of “The People’s Friend” magazine. Her passions include cats, Highland ponies, good books, vegetarian food and long walks in the Scottish countryside. Her favourite place to get away from it all is the magical Isle of Skye.