On this day one year ago I started this blog – and the year has simply flown by. How to mark a first birthday? Most of us at that age just gurgle a bit then go to sleep. Tempting though that is today after a good lunch, I’ll carry on with the post.
Over the year I’ve been fascinated by the trails which seem to open up behind each plant, trails marked out by language, history, science and imagination. I’d like to thank everyone who’s viewed the blog, and especially those who’ve been interested enough to subscribe as followers and/or leave comments. The stats show that there have been to date nearly six thousand views (I’m writing the number this way to make it look bigger), or to put it another way, an average of almost a hundred people read each post. I feel very happy to have the chance to share my enthusiasm with that many people.
To mark the day and show my gratitude to followers and commenters I’d like to offer a couple of giveaways: first, I’ll send to all of you a list of plants featured in the first year, with Latin, English and French names, and dates when they were photographed and blogged. You can find this by going to the blog page and using ‘Search’ or by clicking on the list of categories, but I know I sometimes prefer to have info in print. Just delete the email headed ‘Plant list’ if you don’t want it.
Second, the photos in this post are recent ones which haven’t made it to the blog. So this is a sort of exclusive offer: if you’d like a fairly large copy of any one of these photo files to print or use as a desktop background on your computer, tell me which one you’d like in a comment and I’ll send it to you. The full size photos are about 10 Mb which won’t go by email, but if you have or want Dropbox installed, I can send the full file that way. Of course if you happen to want another image that has appeared during the year I could send that as an alternative.
I hope you like the new masthead picture – taken a few days ago on a bank on the road out of my village. You should be able to spot: Cistus albidus, Cistus monspeliensis, Euphorbia serrata, Galactites tomentosa, Tragopogon porrifolius, Thymus vulgaris, and Spartium junceum. Some have been on the blog, others will be soon.
Thanks again for keeping me company during the last year, and here’s the inevitable song as a masterclass in improvisation: