When This Tree Blossomed in 2019

N’er cast a clout til May is out

We are waiting for the blossoms in Christ Church Gardens. Last year the blossoms came on 5th April (see the picture of our meeting in 2019). Discussions on social media and in the real world are happening about how early the blossoms, and many other flowers are. Some never stopped. Did we even have a winter in England or did we just go from Autumn to Spring? In London, which of course is it’s own heat island, I have seen gardens full of flowers that didn’t stop flowering over December and January.

My friend who originally comes from Lincolnshire and has been both a tree surgeon and forest manager reminded me of the saying ‘n’er cast a clout til may is out’, explaining clout is clothes in this case and May is the Hawthorn Tree. He lives on a boat on the canal in Nottingham and says the Hawthorn is already out now (in the second week in February). How did May become February and does that mean we need to pack away our winter clothes and boots and get out our summer wear?

Meanwhile the rush to get the Future Machine ready to appear alongside and witness the blossoms in Nottingham is on. The Octagon split over Christmas. It absorbed hours of rain on the procession in Finsbury Park, that swelled the Ash wood. As it dried out over christmas with the heating in my studio the wood contracted making a split down the front of the Octagon.

I took it back to Ian to see if he could find a way to fix it and stop it happening again. In his cold, dry studio it healed itself. Breathing back into place as a perfect octagon, the split has nearly disappeared. Spooky. We now need to find a way to waterproof it and stop it happening again if the Ash will let us. It is truly Ygdrassil, the tree of life. Lets hope it can protect us from wildfires, early blossoms, life and home threatening storms and plagues of locusts. Or at least help us protect ourselves.