The Hawthorn is also called the May Tree in the UK, hence the May Flowers in this nice blog piece. What a glorious flowering there is in the English countryside at this time of year! Nature does frequently remind us to stay aware of her beauty. Note that Americans may regard some other plant that flowers in May as the May Flower!
White May, Red May
Walking through a country park last week, the air heavy with the scent of May blossom, I was reminded of a childhood book which I still have: Fairies of the Trees by Cicely Mary Barker. A short poem – my favourite in the book – begins
“White May is flowering, Red May beside;”
I can remember the rest of the poem too, but I found the book – obviously kept as one I treasured – and checked it out. The book was a Christmas gift from my godmother when I was 6 years old and is still in fairly good nick: I was encouraged to look after my possessions!
Reading this poem as a child, I learned to identify May, Laburnum and Lilac. Other poems taught me about Elderflowers, Sycamore seeds with wings, Ash keys and Guelder roses.
Cicely Mary Barker was an illustrator; her books…
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